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Diazepam and Sustiva

Feb 10, 2003


I am on AZT, 3TC and Sustiva. Is there any drug interaction with Diazepam

Thanking you in advance.


Response from Dr. Horwath

I know of no drug interaction between diazepam (Valium) and the antiretrovirals you are taking: AZT, 3TC, and Sustiva (efavirenz).

However, there are well known interactions between ritonavir (Norvir) and some benzodiazepines (including diazepam, [Valium], clorazepate [Tranxene], estazolam [Prosom], flurazepam [Dalmane], zolpidem [Ambien], midazolam [Versed], and triazolam [Halcion]). When taking ritonavir along with one of these benzodiazepines, one may encounter a higher blood level due to ritonavir inhibiting the metabolism of these drugs. This may result in greater than usual sedation, and in some cases, respiratory problems. It also should be remembered that ritonavir is a component of Kaletra.

Midazolam [Versed], and triazolam [Halcion] are actually listed as contraindicated in persons taking ritonavir. The other benzodiazepines listed above may be used along with ritonavir, but at lower doses and with greater caution.

This drug interaction does not occur between ritonavir and the following benzodiazepines: oxazepam [Serax], lorazepam [Ativan], or temazepam [Restoril]. These drugs are metabolized by a different route, and do not interact significantly with ritonavir.

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