Stavudine; Zidovudine/Doxorubicin Interactions

This information is generalized and not intended as specific medical advice. Consult your healthcare professional before taking or discontinuing any drug or commencing any course of treatment.

Medical warning:

Serious. These medicines may interact and cause very harmful effects. Contact your healthcare professional (e.g. doctor or pharmacist) for more information.

How the interaction occurs:

Doxorubicin may decrease the transformation of stavudine and zidovudine to their active forms. Zidovudine may make some cancer cells resistant to doxorubicin.

What might happen:

The levels of the active form of stavudine or zidovudine in your blood may decrease and they may not be as effective. If you are taking zidovudine, doxorubicin may not work as well against your cancer.

What you should do about this interaction:

Let your healthcare professionals (e.g. doctor or pharmacist) know that you are taking these medicines together. Your medicines may need to be changed.Your healthcare professionals may already be aware of this interaction and may be monitoring you for it. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with them first.

  • 1.Hoggard PG, Kewn S, Barry MG, Khoo SH, Back DJ. Effects of drugs on 2',3'-dideoxy-2',3'-didehydrothymidine phosphorylation in vitro. Antimicrob Agents Chemother 1997 Jul;41(6):1231-6.
  • 2.Zerit (stavudine) US prescribing information. Bristol-Myers Squibb Company December 19, 2017.
  • 3.Hoggard PG, Veal GJ, Wild MJ, Barry MG, Back DJ. Drug interactions with zidovudine phosphorylation in vitro. Antimicrob Agents Chemother 1995 Jun; 39(6):1376-8.
  • 4.Cinatl J Jr, Kotchetkov R, Groschel B, Cinatl J, Driever PH, Kabickova H, Kornhuber B, Schwabe D, Doerr HW. Azidothymidine resistance of H9 human T-cell lymphoma cells is associated with decreased sensitivity to antitumor agents and inhibition of apoptosis. Int J Mol Med 1998 Dec; 2(6):685-91.
  • 5.Retrovir (zidovudine) US prescribing information. GlaxoSmithKline September, 2018.

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CONDITIONS OF USE: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of healthcare professionals. The information is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse effects, nor should it be construed to indicate that use of a particular drug is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any drug, changing any diet or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment.