An Overview of Symtuza (Darunavir/Cobicistat/Emtricitabine/Tenofovir Alafenamide)
July 23, 2018
Brand Name: Symtuza
Symtuza can cause serious, life-threatening side effects. These include severe or life-threatening skin reactions or rash, a buildup of lactic acid in the blood (lactic acidosis), and severe liver problems.
Contact your health care provider right away if you have any of the following symptoms that could be signs of severe or life-threatening skin reactions or rash:
Contact your health care provider right away if you have any of the following symptoms that could be signs of lactic acidosis:
Contact your health care provider right away if you have any of the following symptoms that could be signs of liver problems:
Symtuza is not approved for the treatment of chronic hepatitis B virus infection (HBV). If you have both HIV and HBV infection and take Symtuza, your HBV infection may get much worse (flare up) if you stop taking Symtuza. To help avoid this, take Symtuza exactly as prescribed. Do not run out of Symtuza or stop taking Symtuza without talking to your health care provider.
While taking Symtuza, it is important to keep all of your appointments with your health care provider.
What Is Symtuza?
Symtuza is a prescription medicine approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of HIV infection in adults:
Symtuza is a complete regimen for the treatment of HIV infection and should not be used with other HIV medicines.
Symtuza contains the following 4 different medicines combined in one pill:
PIs block an HIV enzyme, a type of protein, called protease. By blocking protease, PIs prevent HIV from multiplying and can reduce the amount of HIV in the body. Pharmacokinetic enhancers, such as cobicistat, are used in HIV treatment to increase the effectiveness of other HIV medicines. In Symtuza, cobicistat increases the effectiveness of darunavir.
Emtricitabine and tenofovir alafenamide are NRTIs. NRTIs block an HIV enzyme, a type of protein, called reverse transcriptase. By blocking reverse transcriptase, the two drugs in combination prevent HIV from multiplying and can reduce the amount of HIV in the body.
HIV medicines can't cure HIV/AIDS, but taking a combination of HIV medicines (called an HIV regimen) every day helps people with HIV live longer, healthier lives. HIV medicines also reduce the risk of HIV transmission.
What Should I Tell My Health Care Provider Before Taking Symtuza?
Before taking Symtuza, tell your health care provider:
How Should I Take Symtuza?
Symtuza comes in tablet form. Each tablet contains:
Take Symtuza according to your health care provider's instructions.
Do not change your dose or stop taking Symtuza without talking to your health care provider.
Take Symtuza one time a day with food.
If you have difficulty swallowing, the tablet may be split using a tablet-cutter. After splitting the tablet, the entire dose (both halves) should be taken right away.
If you take too much Symtuza, contact your health care provider or local poison control center (1-800-222-1222) right away, or go to the nearest hospital emergency room.
For more information on how to take Symtuza, see the FDA drug label.
What Should I Do if I Forget a Dose?
If you miss a dose of Symtuza, take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. But if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and just take your next dose at the regular time. Do not take two doses at the same time to make up for a missed dose.
What Side Effects Can Symtuza Cause?
Symtuza may cause side effects. Many side effects from HIV medicines, such as nausea or occasional dizziness, are manageable. See the AIDSinfo fact sheet on HIV Medicines and Side Effects for more information.
Some side effects of Symtuza can be serious. Serious side effects of Symtuza include severe or life-threatening skin reactions or rash, a buildup of lactic acid in the blood (lactic acidosis), and severe liver problems (See the WARNING box above). Other possible side effects of Symtuza include:
Tell your health care provider if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.
These are not all the possible side effects of Symtuza. To learn more about possible side effects of Symtuza, read the drug label or package insert or talk to your health care provider or pharmacist. You can report side effects to FDA MedWatch at 1-800-FDA-1088 (1-800-332-1088) or online.
How Should Symtuza Be Stored?
Where Can I Find More Information About Symtuza?
More information about Symtuza is available:
The above Patient Version drug summary is based on the following FDA label(s): Tablet.
[Note from TheBody.com: This article was created by AIDSinfo, who last updated it on July 19, 2018. We have cross-posted it with their permission.]
This article was provided by AIDSinfo. Visit the AIDSinfo website to find out more about their activities and publications.
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