"Little Tablets of Gold": An Examination of the Psychological and Social Dimensions of PrEP Among LGBTQ Communities

Christina J. Sun, Kirsten M. Anderson, Kim Toevs, Dayna Morrison, Caitlin Wells, Christina Nicolaidis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


There are significant psychological, social, and cultural dimensions to the HIV epidemic in the United States, especially among lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) communities. Biomedical HIV treatment has been shown to impact these dimensions. However, there is little understanding of the real-world psychosocial and sociocultural effects of the latest biomedical HIV prevention strategy, HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP). This study explored the psychosocial and sociocultural dimensions of PrEP use among LGBTQ adults. We interviewed 23 LGBTQ adults who were current or former users of PrEP. Results included that PrEP users' experiences were shaped by multiple forms of stigma. Participants were highly motivated to challenge PrEP stigma and to support PrEP use among other community members. Lastly, participants described positive impacts on their individual well-being and their sexual partnerships. Findings suggest that PrEP has significant impacts beyond biomedical outcomes for both the individuals who use PrEP and their communities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)51-62
Number of pages12
JournalAIDS education and prevention : official publication of the International Society for AIDS Education
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1 2019



  • LGBT
  • pre-exposure prophylaxis
  • prevention
  • social construction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Infectious Diseases

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