pre-ex·​po·​sure ˌprē-ik-ˈspō-zhər How to pronounce pre-exposure (audio)
variants or less commonly preexposure
: occurring, administered, used, or being in the period preceding exposure (as to a stimulus or a pathogen)
pre-exposure rabies vaccination
Canon has also added a red-eye reduction pre-exposure light …Herbert Keppler
see also pre-exposure prophylaxis
pre-exposure noun
Rats differ from monkeys and chicks in that simultaneous pre-exposure to two stimuli does facilitate their subsequent discrimination … R. A. Hinde

Examples of pre-exposure in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Developing long-acting ways of treating HIV has become a major focus in efforts to manage the virus, including to prevent infection, known as pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP. Robert Hart, Forbes, 21 Feb. 2024 Post-exposure vaccination should be administered as soon as possible to anyone with a known or likely exposure to rabies, including those who received pre-exposure protection. Dalia Faheid, CNN, 14 Feb. 2024 Millions more avoided infecting others or were protected from being infected with HIV thanks to PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis). Lori Youmshajekian, Scientific American, 22 Nov. 2023 InMOTION also partners with community health workers to identify people who do not have HIV and are eligible to receive pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), which helps prevent the virus, said Springer. Anika Nayak, STAT, 10 Nov. 2023 In the same way that army drills prepared them for combat, a pre-exposure to an attack on their beliefs could have prepared them against mind control. Grace Browne, WIRED, 15 Aug. 2023 That latest available data from February 2023 also shows that during 2022, more people began taking PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) than in the previous four years. Johanna Chisholm, WIRED, 13 July 2023 That’s essential for HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP, which requires a person to maintain a certain concentration of the drug in their bloodstream at all times to be protected. WIRED, 26 June 2023 But the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates just 30% of the 1.2 million Americans who could benefit from pre-exposure prophylaxis, known as PrEP, were prescribed the drug in 2021. Ken Alltucker, USA TODAY, 8 June 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'pre-exposure.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1906, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of pre-exposure was in 1906

Dictionary Entries Near pre-exposure

Cite this Entry

“Pre-exposure.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Apr. 2024.

Medical Definition


pre-ex·​po·​sure -ik-ˈspō-zhər How to pronounce pre-exposure (audio)
variants preexposure
: of, relating to, occurring in, or being the period preceding exposure (as to a stimulus or a pathogen)
pre-exposure immunization
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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