This information from Lexicomp® explains what you need to know about this medication, including what it’s used for, how to take it, its side effects, and when to call your healthcare provider.
Brand Names: US
Brand Names: Canada
What is this drug used for?
- It is used to treat HIV infection.
What do I need to tell the doctor BEFORE my child takes this drug?
For all patients taking this drug:
- If your child is allergic to this drug; any part of this drug; or any other drugs, foods, or substances. Tell the doctor about the allergy and what signs your child had.
- If your child is taking any of these drugs: Carbamazepine, dexamethasone, oxcarbazepine, phenobarbital, phenytoin, rifabutin, rifampin, rifapentine, or St. John’s wort.
- If the patient weighs less than 77 pounds (35 kilograms) or the patient is a child younger than 12 years of age.
If your child is breast-feeding a baby:
- Be sure your child does not breast-feed a baby while taking this drug. Your child may also need to avoid breast-feeding a baby for some time after the last dose. Talk with your child’s doctor to see if your child needs to avoid breast-feeding a baby after the last dose.
This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with this drug.
Tell the doctor and pharmacist about all of your child’s drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe to give this drug with all of your child’s other drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug your child takes without checking with the doctor.
What are some things I need to know or do while my child takes this drug?
- Tell all of your child’s health care providers that your child is taking this drug. This includes your child’s doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
- Have blood work checked as you have been told by the doctor. Talk with the doctor.
- If your child has had hepatitis, talk with the doctor.
- This drug is not a cure for HIV. Be sure your child stays under the care of the doctor.
- This drug does not stop the spread of diseases like HIV or hepatitis that are passed through blood. Be sure needles and other things like toothbrushes or razors are not shared.
- A severe and sometimes deadly reaction has happened. Most of the time, this reaction has signs like fever, rash, or swollen glands with problems in body organs like the liver, kidney, blood, heart, muscles and joints, or lungs. If you have questions, talk with the doctor.
If your child is or may be sexually active:
- This drug does not stop the spread of diseases like HIV or hepatitis that are passed through having sex. Be sure your child does not have any kind of sex without using a latex or polyurethane condom.
If your child is pregnant or may be pregnant:
- Tell the doctor if your child is pregnant or becomes pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of your child using this drug while pregnant.
What are some side effects that I need to call my child’s doctor about right away?
WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your child’s doctor or get medical help right away if your child has any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:
- Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
- Signs of depression, suicidal thoughts, emotional ups and downs, abnormal thinking, anxiety, or lack of interest in life.
- Signs of liver problems like dark urine, tiredness, decreased appetite, upset stomach or stomach pain, light-colored stools, throwing up, or yellow skin or eyes.
- Swollen gland.
- Bone, joint, or muscle pain.
- Eye irritation.
- Some people have had severe reactions within minutes after the injection. These include shortness of breath, wheezing, feeling agitated, stomach cramps, flushing or feeling warm, sweating, numbness in the mouth, anxiety, back pain, chest pain, dizziness, passing out, severe headache, or change in eyesight. Most signs went away within a few minutes after the injection. Tell the doctor if your child has any of these signs or other reaction after the injection.
- Changes in your child’s immune system can happen when your child starts taking drugs to treat HIV. If your child has an infection that you did not know was there, it may show up when your child takes this drug. Tell your child’s doctor right away if your child has any new signs after starting this drug, even after taking it for several months. This includes signs of infection like fever, sore throat, weakness, cough, or shortness of breath.
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 child’s doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother your child or do not go away:
- Pain, redness, swelling, or other reaction where the injection was given.
- Feeling tired or weak.
- Dizziness or headache.
- Upset stomach.
- Trouble sleeping.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your child’s doctor. Call your child’s doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to your national health agency.
How is this drug best given?
Give this drug as ordered by your child’s doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.
- It is given as a shot into a muscle.
- It is important that your child does not miss or skip a dose of this drug during treatment.
What do I do if my child misses a dose?
- Call your child’s doctor to find out what to do.
- If your child needs to miss a planned appointment, talk with the doctor about treatment options.
How do I store and/or throw out this drug?
- If you need to store this drug at home, talk with your child’s doctor, nurse, or pharmacist about how to store it.
General drug facts
- If your child’s symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your child’s doctor.
- Do not share your child’s drug with others and do not give anyone else’s drug to your child.
- Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
- Throw away unused or expired drugs. Do not flush down a toilet or pour down a drain unless you are told to do so. Check with your pharmacist if you have questions about the best way to throw out drugs. There may be drug take-back programs in your area.
- Some drugs may have another patient information leaflet. If you have any questions about this drug, please talk with your child’s doctor, nurse, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
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