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Lamivudine and Zidovudine oral
LAMIVUDINE/ZIDOVUDINE - ORAL

Important Note

The following information is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of your physician, pharmacist or other healthcare professional. It should not be construed to indicate that use of the drug is safe, appropriate, or effective for you. Consult your healthcare professional before using this drug.

LAMIVUDINE/ZIDOVUDINE - ORAL

(lam-EYE-view-deen/zye-DOE-view-deen)

COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Combivir

WARNING: Rarely, this medication has caused severe (sometimes fatal) liver and blood disorders (e.g., lactic acidosis, neutropenia, anemia), especially in people with advanced HIV infection. Notify your doctor immediately if you have dark urine, unusual fatigue, yellowing of the skin or eyes, rapid breathing, drowsiness, muscle aches, stomach/abdominal pain, or signs of an infection, such as a persistent fever or sore throat.

Uses

This medication is used to treat HIV infection, generally in combination with other medications. This medication contains lamivudine. The use of lamivudine, abacavir, and tenofovir in combination may not be effective in treating HIV infection. If you are currently taking all three of these drugs, your doctor or pharmacist should carefully review your treatment plan. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details.

How To Use

This product is taken by mouth. The dosage is one tablet twice daily, with or without food. Take exactly as directed and continue to take your other HIV drugs. Do not stop using your medication unless directed to do so.

Side Effects

Headache, nausea, diarrhea, dizziness, sleep problems may occur. If these persist or worsen, notify your doctor promptly. Report promptly: muscle pain, stomach pain, tingling and numbness. Unlikely but report promptly: persistent sore throat, fever, yellowing eyes or skin, fatigue, rapid breathing, confusion, hair loss, unusual increase in amount of urine, seizures, dark urine. Very unlikely but report promptly: unusual bleeding or bruising. Changes in body fat may occur while you are taking this medication (e.g., 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 therapy with your doctor, as well as the possible role of exercise to reduce this side effect. Seek immediate medical attention if an allergic reaction occurs. Symptoms include: skin rash, difficulty breathing, hives, itching. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

Precautions

This medication should not be used if you have certain medical conditions. Before using this medicine, consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have: liver disease. Before using this product, tell your doctor your medical history, including: allergies (especially drug allergies), blood or bone marrow disorders, kidney problems, heart disease, alcoholism, hepatitis B virus infection, major injuries/surgeries/infections. This product is not recommended in children less than 12 years old since the dosage cannot be adjusted for this age group. Lamivudine-containing products should be used with extreme caution in children with pancreatitis. This medication should be used only when clearly needed during pregnancy. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor. This product may be excreted into breast milk. Do not breast feed because breast milk can transmit HIV. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for any questions.

Drug Interactions

This drug should not be used with the following medications because very serious interactions may occur: zalcitabine. If you are currently using any of these medications, tell your doctor or pharmacist before starting lamivudine/zidovudine. Tell your doctor of all nonprescription and prescription medication you may use, especially of: interferons, other drugs that affect the bone marrow (e.g., anticancer drugs, chloramphenicol), abacavir and tenofovir, trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole, atovaquone, fluconazole, methadone, valproic acid, probenecid, ganciclovir, protease inhibitors (e.g., indinavir, ritonavir). This product contains both zidovudine and lamivudine. Do not take other medicine containing zidovudine or lamivudine unless directed to do so. Do not start or stop any medicine without doctor or pharmacist approval.

Overdose

If overdose is suspected, contact your local poison control center or emergency room immediately. Symptoms of overdose may include nausea, vomiting, headache, dizziness, drowsiness, and confusion.

Notes

This product is not a cure for HIV infection but has shown positive results. The long-term effects are unknown at this time. Keep all doctor appointments and scheduled laboratory tests as your condition will be checked closely. This product does not reduce the risk of passing the virus to others through sexual contact or blood contamination. This is a potent product. Do not allow others to use your medication.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose, use it as soon as you remember. If it is within 2 hours of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. It is important not to miss doses of this drug.

Storage

Store at room temperature between 36 and 86 degrees F (2-30 degrees C) away from light and moisture.

Medical Alert

Your condition can cause complications in a medical emergency. For enrollment information call MedicAlert at 1-800-854-1166 (USA), or 1-800-668-1507 (Canada).