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New Cocktail containing efavirenz

Feb 27, 2003

My doctor has suggested putting me on a new regimen containing efavirenz. I know very little about the drug and would like to know if there are side effects I should be concerned about. Do I have any other options if the side effects are unfavorable? Thanks so much for your answer.

Response from Dr. Horwath

Efavirenz(Sustiva) has been associated with central nervous system (CNS) adverse effects in as many as 50% of those who take it. These side effects may include insomnia, confusion, dizziness, nightmares, hallucinations, depressed mood, somnolence, euphoria, and impaired concentration. For many people these symptoms are transient (less than one or two months). For people who have persistent CNS side effects from efavirenz, they may benefit from switching to nevirapine (Viramune). But this decision requires considering the possible effects on controlling your viral load and disease progression. You should consult your doctor and discuss these options.

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