Rarely, tenofovir has caused severe (sometimes fatal) liver problems and a certain metabolic problem (lactic acidosis). Tell your doctor immediately if you develop symptoms of liver problems (such as persistent nausea/vomiting/loss of appetite, stomach/abdominal pain, pale stools, dark urine, yellowing eyes/skin, unusual tiredness), or of lactic acidosis (such as stomach discomfort, nausea, vomiting, fast/difficult breathing, drowsiness, muscle pain, weakness, cold skin). These serious side effects may occur more often in women and obese patients.
If you have hepatitis B infection, your hepatitis symptoms may get worse or become very serious if you stop taking tenofovir. Talk with your doctor before stopping this medication. Your doctor will monitor liver tests for several months after you stop tenofovir. Tell your doctor immediately if you develop symptoms of worsening liver problems.Who should not take Viread?
This drug is used with other HIV medications 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. Tenofovir belongs to a class of drugs known as nucleotide reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTIs).
Tenofovir is not a cure for HIV infection. To decrease your risk of spreading HIV disease to others, do all of the following: (1) continue to take all HIV medications exactly as prescribed by your doctor, (2) always use an effective barrier method (latex or polyurethane condoms/dental dams) during all sexual activity, and (3) do not share personal items (such as needles/syringes, toothbrushes, and razors) that may have contacted blood or other body fluids. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details.
Tenofovir is also used to treat a certain type of liver infection called chronic hepatitis B infection. It helps to decrease the amount of hepatitis B virus in your body by interfering with virus growth.
OTHER USES: This section contains uses of this drug that are not listed in the approved professional labeling for the drug but that may be prescribed by your health care professional. Use this drug for a condition that is listed in this section only if it has been so prescribed by your health care professional.
This medication may also be used in combination with other HIV medications to reduce the risk of getting HIV infection after contact with the virus. Consult your doctor for more details.
Read the Patient Information Leaflet if available from your pharmacist before you start taking tenofovir and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
Take this medication by mouth with food as directed by your doctor, usually once daily. The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. For children, the dosage is also based on weight.
Carefully measure the dose using the special measuring device/scoop provided. Do not use a household spoon because you may not get the correct dose. Mix tenofovir with 2 to 4 ounces (60 to 120 milliliters) of soft foods that can be swallowed without chewing (such as applesauce, baby food, yogurt). Do not mix tenofovir with liquid as this medication may float to the top of the liquid even after stirring. Take this medication right away after mixing to avoid bitter taste.
It is very important to continue taking this medication (and other HIV medications) exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not skip any doses. Do not increase your dose, take this drug more often than prescribed, or stop taking it (or other HIV medications) even for a short time unless directed to do so by your doctor. Skipping or changing your dose without approval from your doctor may cause the amount of virus to increase, make the infection more difficult to treat (resistant), or worsen side effects.
This medication works best when the amount of drug in your body is kept at a constant level. Therefore, take this drug at evenly spaced intervals. To help you remember, take it at the same time each day. Order your refills early to make sure you do not run out of medication.
See also Warning section.
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: mental/mood changes (such as depression, anxiety, confusion), signs of kidney problems (such as a change in the amount of urine), unusual thirst, muscle cramps/weakness.
Some people with HIV infection may experience worsening of a previous medical condition (such as an old infection) as their immune systems improve, or develop new conditions because their immune systems have become overactive. This reaction may occur at any time (soon after starting HIV treatment or many months later). Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: unexplained weight loss, persistent muscle aches/weakness, joint pain, numbness/tingling of the hands/feet/arms/legs, severe tiredness, vision changes, severe/persistent headaches, signs of infection (such as fever, chills, trouble breathing, cough, non-healing skin sores), signs of an overactive thyroid (such as irritability, nervousness, heat intolerance, fast/pounding/irregular heartbeat, bulging eyes, unusual growth in the neck/thyroid known as a goiter), signs of a certain nerve problem known as Guillain-Barre Syndrome (such as difficulty breathing/swallowing/moving your eyes, drooping face, paralysis, slurred speech).
Changes in body fat may occur while you are taking this medication (such as increased fat in the upper back and stomach areas, decreased fat in the arms and legs). The cause and long-term effects of these changes are unknown. Discuss the risks and benefits of treatment with your doctor, as well as the possible use of exercise to reduce this side effect.
Tenofovir may increase the risk of bone loss. Discuss the risks and benefits of treatment with your doctor, as well as the possible use of calcium and vitamin D to reduce this side effect. If you are at risk for bone loss, your doctor may monitor your bone mineral density. Tell your doctor right away if any of the following serious side effects occur: bone pain, easily broken bones.
Tenofovir can commonly cause a rash that is usually not serious. However, you may not be able to tell it apart from a rare rash that could be a sign of a severe reaction. Therefore, get medical help right away if you develop any rash.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
In the US -
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Before taking tenofovir, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; 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 C, cirrhosis), bone problems (such as bone disease, bone loss/osteoporosis, weak/broken bones), disease of the pancreas (pancreatitis), alcohol use.
This drug may make you dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires alertness until you are sure you can perform such activities safely. Limit alcoholic beverages. Also limit alcohol because it may increase your risk of liver problems and pancreatitis.
Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist about all the products you use (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products).
During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. However, HIV medicines are now usually given to pregnant women with HIV. Treatment can decrease the risk of passing the HIV infection to your baby. Tenofovir may be part of that treatment. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.
This medication passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding. If you have HIV infection, do not breast-feed because breast milk can transmit HIV.
Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval.
Some products that may interact with this drug include: adefovir, other drugs that may harm the kidneys (including aminoglycosides such as amikacin/gentamicin).
Do not take this medication with other products that contain tenofovir.
Some other drugs to treat HIV infection (including atazanavir) may also interact with tenofovir. Tenofovir can decrease the effectiveness of atazanavir (by decreasing blood levels). If you are taking atazanavir with this product, you may need to also take another medication (ritonavir). Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details. Your doctor will adjust your medications and monitor your treatment to reduce the risk of side effects.
If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.
Do not share this medication with others.
Laboratory and/or medical tests (such as kidney/liver function, urine glucose/protein, viral load, T-cell counts, blood mineral levels, bone density tests) should be performed before you start treatment and periodically to monitor your progress or check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details.
Keep all medical and laboratory appointments.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
Store at room temperature away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medications away from children and pets.
Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company.
Information last revised January 2015. Copyright(c) 2015 First Databank, Inc.
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