August 19, 2023

Why Am I Getting HIV Ads on Facebook?

When you log on to Facebook, you'll see a series of advertisements that are tailored to your interests. Facebook uses information such as your age, location, gender, and online activity to deliver these ads. It also receives data from third parties to target specific groups. You can find out more about how your information is used on Facebook by visiting the Ad Preferences page.

HIV is a virus that infects certain cells that are supposed to defend the body against infection, called CD4 cells. When these cells are infected by HIV, they become virus factories and produce thousands of copies of the virus, which can then infect other cells. Over time, this process weakens the immune system and increases a person's risk of getting serious illnesses.

If a person has HIV, they will need to take regular medications to prevent the virus from destroying their immune system. These are called antiretroviral drugs and are commonly referred to as "nukes." The most effective medications are protease inhibitors and integrase inhibitors. Protease inhibitors bind to the enzyme HIV needs to reproduce, and integrase inhibitors block the enzyme that allows HIV to infect cells. When combined, these drugs are incredibly effective and have few side effects.

Last month, more than 50 LGBTQ, HIV, and public health organizations signed an open letter to Facebook asking them to remove ads that spread harmful misinformation about the HIV prevention medication Truvada. These ads, bought by law firms seeking to recruit people for a class-action lawsuit against the drug's manufacturer, Gilead Sciences, overstate the possible side effects of taking the once-daily pill.


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