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HIV 101: Summary of Antiretroviral Agents Dosing and Administration Recommendations

November 2001

Adapted from Bartlett J.G. and Gallant J.E. 2001-2002 Medical Management of HIV Infection. Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD. 2001. Additional information from

Nucleoside Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors (NRTIs)
(AZT, ZDV, Retrovir)
(ddl, Videx, Videx EC)
(ddC, Hivid)
(d4T, Zerit)
(3TC, Epivir)
(ABC, Ziagen)
Recommended Dose300 mg bid (or with 3TC as Combivir 1 tab bid)Tablets or oral solution >60kg: 400 mg qd (EC) or 200 mg bid (tabs) or 250 mg bid (powder) <60kg: 250 mg qd or 125 mg bid (tabs) or 167 mg bid (powder) 0.75 mg tid>60kg: 40 mg bid

<60kg: 30 mg bid

150 mg bid or with AZT as Combivir (1 tab bid) <50kg: 2 mg/kg bid)300 mg bid(Nucleotide analog) 300 mg once daily
Food EffectNoneLevels 55% Take 1 hr before or 1 hr after meal NoneNoneNoneNone

Alcohol ABC levels 41%

Should be taken with a meal
Major Toxicity
Class Toxicity
Bone marrow suppression: anemia and/or neutropenia

Subjective complaints: GI intolerance, headache, insomnia, asthenia


Peripheral neuropathy

GI intolerance, nausea, diarrhea

Peripheral neuropathy


Peripheral neuropathy(Minimal toxicity)Hypersensitivity (2-5%), fever, nausea, vomiting, anorexia, cough, dyspena, malaise, morbilliform rash. May be life-threatening with rechallenge. Bone (in animals)

Renal (in animals)

Mild to moderate gastrointestinal: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, flatulence

Drug InteractionRibavirin may reduce AZT activityMethadone  ddI levels 41%, consider ddI dose increase Methadone  ddI levels 27%. No dose adjustment NoneNoneNoneTake two hours before or one hour after didanosine (if applicable)

Non-Nucleoside Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors (NNRTIs)
Recommended Dose200 mg po qd x 14 days, then 200 mg po bid400 mg po tid600 mg po qd at hs
Food EffectNoneNone-50% with high fat meal; avoid after high fat meal
Drug InteractionInduces cytochrome P450 enzymes

PI interactions see Table 4-16 in Bartlett Guide*

Methadone AUC decreased 60% titrate methadone dose

Not recommended: Ketoconazole and rifampin

Caution: anticonvulsant

Inhibits and induces cytochrome P450 3A4 enzymes

Contraindicated drugs: astemizole, midazolam, triazolam, cisapride, ergot alkaloids, tergenadine

PI interactions: generally dose when given with PIs (like Kaletra) and see Table 4-16 in Bartlett Guide*

Possibly important drug interactions: see Chapter 4 in Bartlett Guide*

Methadone AUC decreased 60% titrate methadone dose

Major Toxicity
Class Toxicity
Rash (15-30%) may require hospitalization; rare cases of Stevens-Johnson syndrome; hepatitisRash; headaches

Increased transaminase levels

Dizziness, "disconnectedness," somnolence, insomnia, bad dreams, confusion, amnesia, agitation, hallucinations, poor concentration

40% usually resolves after 2 weeks

Take hs.

Rash -- severe in 5%; rare reports of Stevens-Johnson syndrome.

Teratogenic in cynomalgus monkeys

Avoid in pregnancy, and women and men should use adequate contraception methods.

False positive drug screening test for cannabinoids (marijuana)

Protease Inhibitors (PIs)
Lopinavir + Ritonavir
Recommended Dose800 mg q 8h
Separated ddI dose by 1 hr
600 mg bid
Separate ddI dose by 2 hr
Not recommended as single PI 400 mg bid with RTV1,200 mg tid1,200 mg bid (caps)
1400 mg bid (oral solution)
1,250 mg bid or 750 mg tid3 caps or 0.5mL twice daily
4 caps bid when used with efavirenz or nevirapine
Food Effect77%; take 1 hr before or 2 hours after meals; may take with low fat snack or skim milk15%; take with food if possible to improve tolerabilityNo food effect when taken with RTV6x; take with large meal unless taken with RTVHigh fat meal decreases AUC 20%; can be taken with or without food, but high fat meal should be avoided2-3x; take with meal or snackFat increases AUC 50% to 80%; should be taken with food
Side Effects*GI intolerance (10-15%); nephrolithiasis or nephrotoxicity (10-15%); headache; asthenia; dizziness; rash; metallic taste; ITP; alopecia; lab: increase indirect bilirubinemia (inconsequential) Class side effects*GI intolerance (20-40%); paresthesias-circum-oral and extremities (10%); taste perversion (10%); lab: triglycerides increase in 60% and transaminase increase in 10-15%, CPK and uric acid increase Class side effects*GI intolerance (10-20%); increase Class side effects*GI intolerance (20-30%); headache; hypoglycemia; transaminase increase Class side effects*GI intolerance (10-30%); rash (20-25% -- usually at 1-10 wks), Stevens-Johnson syndrome (1%); paresthesias (10-30% -- perioral or peripheral) Increase in liver function tests. Class side effects*Diarrhea (10-30%) Class side effects*GI intolerance: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea Elevated Lipids Asthenia Class side effects*

* For full information on toxicity and drug interactions for PIs and class side effects, see Chapter 4 of Bartlett J.G. and Gallant J.E. 2001-2002 Medical Management of HIV Infection. Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD. 2001. For information on tenofovir, see

** These two drugs usually used in combination with ritonavir (see HEPP News, February 2001).

Back to the HEPP News November 2001 contents page.

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This article was provided by Brown Medical School. It is a part of the publication HEPP News.