Treatment breaks and travel

To overcome some of the difficulties that surround travelling whilst taking HIV treatment, some people consider taking a treatment break or ‘structured treatment interruption’.

Do not take a break from your HIV treatment or any other medicines you have been prescribed without discussing it with your doctor in advance.

Timing of treatment doses when travelling

Travelling across international time zones is likely to have implications for the time you take your medication. There are three options you may wish to consider:

  • Continue to take your medicines on UK time – but this could mean that you have to take your doses at inconvenient times.
  • Gradually adjust the time you take your medicines, from UK time to the time in the country you are visiting. You may need to start doing this in advance of your trip.
  • Alter your dose time to fit in with the time zone of the country you are visiting, but this could mean that there are some long intervals between doses as you adjust.

You may find it difficult to keep track of exactly what time you should take each dose. Using an alarm and daily pill box can help you to keep track of when to take each dose. It is wise to talk over your plan with a doctor or pharmacist before you travel.

This content was checked for accuracy at the time it was written. It may have been superseded by more recent developments. NAM recommends checking whether this is the most current information when making decisions that may affect your health.