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Two parts[change | change source]
Examples[change | change source]
Preventative medicine[change | change source]
Prophylaxis is the central idea in preventative medicine. People usually think medical treatment helps sick people to get healthy. Prophylactic treatment is helpful in a different way. Primary prophylaxis tries to stop healthy people from getting sick. Secondary prophylaxis tries to stop people who are sick from getting worse.
Birth control[change | change source]
Prophylaxis may also be used as a synonym for birth control. Condoms are prophylactic, because when you use them, the female will not get pregnant. It is also prophylactic in another sense, because it reduces the spread of sexually transmitted diseases. In the strict meaning and medical meaning of the word "profylaxe", it only means prevention of DISEASE, not of birth. For example, oral contraceptive is not a profylaxe, because it does not prevent disease.