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Drugs reference index «Emtriva»



Generic Name: Emtricitabine (EM-trye-SYE-ta-been)Brand Name: Emtriva

Emtriva may cause a serious and sometimes fatal condition called lactic acidosis. The risk of lactic acidosis may be greater if you are a woman, are very overweight, or have liver problems. Contact your doctor right away if you notice symptoms such as fast or difficult breathing; muscle pain or tenderness; slow or irregular heartbeat; unusual drowsiness, dizziness, or lightheadedness; unusual stomach discomfort; or unusual weakness or tiredness. Contact your doctor right away if you start to feel unusually cold or if you have a general feeling of being unwell.

Severe and sometimes fatal liver problems have been reported with this type of medicine (nucleoside analogs). Contact your doctor right away if you have dark urine; severe or persistent stomach pain or tenderness; or yellowing of the eyes or skin.

Emtriva is not approved to treat chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection. Some patients with both HBV and HIV infection experience worsening of HBV infection after they stop taking Emtriva . Your doctor will check your liver function while you take Emtriva and for several months afterwards if you stop taking it. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments. Do not stop taking Emtriva without checking with your doctor. Your doctor may need to prescribe other medicine if you experience worsening of your HBV infection.

Emtriva is used for:

Treating HIV infection. It must be used in combination with other HIV medicines. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.

Emtriva is an antiviral medicine. It works by blocking a protein that helps HIV spread, which reduces HIV levels in the blood.

Do NOT use Emtriva if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in Emtriva
  • you are taking other medicines that contain emtricitabine or lamivudine

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

Before using Emtriva :

Some medical conditions may interact with Emtriva . Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have chronic hepatitis B, kidney problems, lactic acidosis, liver problems (eg, enlarged liver), or abnormal liver function test results, or if you are very overweight

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with Emtriva . However, no specific interactions with Emtriva are known at this time.

Ask your health care provider if Emtriva may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use Emtriva :

Use Emtriva as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • An extra patient leaflet is available with Emtriva . Talk to your pharmacist if you have questions about this information.
  • Take Emtriva by mouth with or without food.
  • Take Emtriva at the same time each day to keep a constant amount of medicine in your body. Do not skip doses of Emtriva .
  • If you miss a dose of Emtriva , take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once. It is important not to miss doses of Emtriva .

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use Emtriva .

Important safety information:

  • Emtriva may cause dizziness. This effect may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use Emtriva with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
  • Do NOT take more than the recommended dose without checking with your doctor. Exceeding the prescribed dose of Emtriva may not provide additional benefits and may increase the risk of side effects.
  • When your medicine supply is low, get more from your doctor or pharmacist as soon as you can. Do not stop taking Emtriva (or other HIV medicines), even for a short period of time. If you do, the virus may grow resistant to the medicine and become harder to treat.
  • Emtriva is not a cure for HIV infection. Patients may still get illnesses and infections associated with HIV. Remain under the care of your doctor.
  • Emtriva does not stop the spread of HIV to others through blood or sexual contact. Use barrier methods of birth control (eg, condoms) if you have HIV infection. Do not share needles, injection supplies, or items like toothbrushes or razors.
  • Emtriva may not prevent other infections. If your health changes, check with your doctor.
  • Lab tests, including liver and kidney function, may be performed while you use Emtriva . These tests may be used to monitor your condition or check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
  • Emtriva should be used with extreme caution in CHILDREN younger than 3 months old; safety and effectiveness in these children have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using Emtriva while you are pregnant. Mothers infected with HIV should not breast-feed. There is a risk of passing the HIV infection or Emtriva to the baby.

Possible side effects of Emtriva :

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Abnormal skin sensation; change in color of skin on palms or soles of feet; changes in body fat; cough; depression; diarrhea; dizziness; headache; indigestion; joint or muscle pain; nausea; runny nose; sleeplessness; stomach pain; vomiting; weakness or lack of energy.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); dark urine; fast or difficult breathing; feeling unusually cold; fever, chills, or sore throat; mental or mood changes; muscle pain or tenderness; severe or persistent cough; severe or persistent stomach discomfort, pain, or tenderness; slow or irregular heartbeat; unusual tiredness or weakness; yellowing of the eyes or skin.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may also report side effects at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center (http://www.aapcc.org), or emergency room immediately.

Proper storage of Emtriva :

Store Emtriva at 77 degrees F (25 degrees C). Brief storage at temperatures between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C) is permitted. Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep Emtriva out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about Emtriva , please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Emtriva is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.

This information is a summary only. It does not contain all information about Emtriva . If you have questions about the medicine you are taking or would like more information, check with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.

  • Emtriva Prescribing Information (FDA)
  • Emtriva Advanced Consumer (Micromedex) - Includes Dosage Information
  • Emtriva Consumer Overview
  • Emtricitabine Professional Patient Advice (Wolters Kluwer)