HIV and Quetiapine (Seroquel)
Sep 27, 2012
I have recently started taking Quetiapine (for Bipolar and anxiety). I knew before starting on it that my HIV meds can increase the amount of Quetiapine in the blood, so my dosage should not be too high. I'm on Ritonavir, Atazanavir and Tenofovir/Emtricitabine. I've now been increased to 300mg Quetiapune a day as lower dosage did not have any effect. However, I've just read on the internet that Quetiapine can decrease the level of white blood cells! Would that make it risky for me to take Quetiapine? I've been on medication for 3,5 years, my viral load is undetectable and my cd4 count is around 750. My cd4 count was 350 when I started on medication.
Response from Dr. Young
Hello and thanks for posting.
You're correct that your HIV protease inhibitors may increase the levels of Seroquel (quetiapine). The main issue is that that the increased quetiapine levels could result in increased risk of toxicity, including cardiac rhythm problems. As for the decreased WBC, monitoring with blood testing would detect any significant issues.
In circumstances like this, the lowest effective dose of the effected drug (quetiapine) should be used; if you already have heart disease, I'd be very cautious about the combination.
I hope that helps, BY
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