Generic Name: raltegravir (ral TEG ra veer)Brand Names: Isentress
Raltegravir is an antiviral medication that prevents human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) cells from multiplying in your body.
Raltegravir is used to treat HIV, which causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). Raltegravir is not a cure for HIV or AIDS.
Raltegravir may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.
Before using raltegravir, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs, or if you have a muscle disorder, kidney disease, or liver disease.HIV can be passed to the baby if the mother is not properly treated during pregnancy. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment. Take all of your HIV medicines as directed to control your infection while you are pregnant. You should not breast-feed while you are using raltegravir. Women with HIV or AIDS should not breast-feed at all. Even if your baby is born without HIV, you may still pass the virus to the baby in your breast milk.
Taking this medication will not prevent you from passing HIV to other people. Talk with your doctor about safe methods of preventing HIV transmission during sex. Sharing drug or medicine needles is never safe, even for a healthy person.Call your doctor at once if you have serious side effects such as easy bruising or bleeding, signs of a new infection, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes), muscle weakness with fever and dark colored urine, or if you urinate less than usual or not at all.
If you have any of these other conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely take this medication:
a muscle disorder;
a history of mental illness or depression.
Your name may need to be listed on an antiviral pregnancy registry if you become pregnant while you are taking this medication. The purpose of this registry is to track the outcome of the pregnancy and delivery to evaluate whether raltegravir had any effect on the baby.You should not breast-feed while you are using raltegravir. Women with HIV or AIDS should not breast-feed at all. Even if your baby is born without HIV, you may still pass the virus to the baby in your breast milk.
Take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take it in larger amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.
You may take raltegravir with or without food.
It is important to use raltegravir regularly to get the most benefit. Get your prescription refilled before you run out of medicine completely.
HIV/AIDS is usually treated with a combination of different drugs. To best treat your condition, use all of your medications as directed by your doctor. Be sure to read the medication guide or patient instructions provided with each of your medications. Do not change your doses or medication schedule without advice from your doctor. Every person with HIV or AIDS should remain under the care of a doctor.Store raltegravir at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
See also: Raltegravir dosage in more detail
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to take the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
Symptoms of a raltegravir overdose are not known.
pale skin, easy bruising or bleeding;
signs of a new infection, such as fever or chills, cough, or flu symptoms;
sore throat and headache with a severe blistering, peeling, and red skin rash;
drowsiness, confusion, increased thirst, lower back pain, urinating less than usual or not at all;
depressed mood, unusual thoughts about hurting yourself;
nausea, stomach pain, loss of appetite, itching, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes); or
muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness with fever or flu symptoms and dark colored urine.
Less serious side effects may include:
nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain;
changes in the shape or location of body fat (especially in your arms, legs, face, neck, breasts, and trunk).
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Usual Adult Dose for HIV Infection:
400 mg orally twice a day
Usual Pediatric Dose for HIV Infection:
16 years or older: 400 mg orally twice a day
The following drugs can interact with raltegravir. Tell your doctor if you are using any of these:
rifampin (Rifadin, Rifamate, Rimactane);
phenobarbital (Solfoton); or
cholesterol medications such as atorvastatin (Lipitor), fluvastatin (Lescol), pravastatin (Pravachol), rosuvastatin (Crestor), simvastatin (Zocor), and others.
This list is not complete and there may be other drugs that can interact with raltegravir. Tell your doctor about all your prescription and over-the-counter medications, vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.