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Lamivudine, Tenofovir & Efavirenz

Lamivudine, Tenofovir & Efavirenz

Uses

This combination product is used by itself to help control HIV infection. It helps to decrease the amount of HIV in your body so your immune system can work better. This lowers your chance of getting HIV complications (such as new infections, cancer) and improves your quality of life. This product is a combination of 3 different drugs: efavirenz, lamivudine, and tenofovir. Efavirenz belongs to a class of drugs known as non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs). Lamivudine is called a nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor and tenofovir is called a nucleotide reverse transcriptase inhibitor. Lamivudine and tenofovir are often called NRTIs.

What are some other side effects of this drug?

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:

  • Headache.
  • Stomach pain.
  • Back pain.
  • Upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Loose stools (diarrhea).
  • Feeling tired or weak.
  • Joint pain.

Why is this medication prescribed?

The combination of efavirenz, lamivudine, and tenofovir is used to treat HIV in adults and children. Efavirenz is in a class of medications called non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs). Lamivudine and tenofovir are in a class of medications called nucleoside and nucleotide reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTIs). They work by decreasing the amount of HIV in the body. Although efavirenz, lamivudine and tenofovir will not cure HIV, these medications may decrease your chance of developing acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) and HIV-related illnesses such as serious infections or cancer. Taking these medications along with practicing safer sex and making other lifestyle changes may decrease the risk of getting or transmitting the HIV virus to other people.

How should this medicine be used?

The combination of efavirenz, lamivudine, and tenofovir comes as a tablet to take by mouth. It is usually taken once a day on an empty stomach (at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after a meal). Take efavirenz, lamivudine, and tenofovir at around the same time every day. Taking efavirenz, lamivudine, and tenofovir at bedtime may make certain side effects less bothersome. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take efavirenz, lamivudine, and tenofovir exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.

Continue to take efavirenz, lamivudine, and tenofovir even if you feel well. Do not stop taking efavirenz, lamivudine, and tenofovir without talking to your doctor. If you stop taking efavirenz, lamivudine, and tenofovir even for a short time, or skip doses, the virus may become resistant to medications and may be harder to treat.

Precautions

Before taking efavirenz/lamivudine/tenofovir, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to any of the ingredients; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: kidney problems, liver problems (such as hepatitis B or C, cirrhosis), mental/mood conditions (such as depression, thoughts of suicide, psychosis), high cholesterol/triglyceride levels, bone problems (such as bone disease, bone loss/osteoporosis, weak/broken bones), disease of the pancreas (pancreatitis), seizures, substance use disorder (such as overuse of or addiction to drugs/alcohol).

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