An Overview of Truvada (Tenofovir/FTC)
March 13, 2018
Brand Name: Truvada
Truvada can cause serious, life-threatening side effects. These include a buildup of lactic acid in the blood (lactic acidosis) and liver problems.
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:
Truvada is not approved for the treatment of chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection. In people with both HIV and HBV infection who are treated with Truvada, stopping Truvada may cause their HBV infection to flare up (get worse). Before starting Truvada, talk to your health care provider about getting tested for HBV infection.
Do not take Truvada to reduce the risk of getting HIV -- also called pre-exposure prophylaxis or PrEP -- unless you are confirmed to be HIV negative.
While taking Truvada, it is important to keep all of your appointments with your health care provider.
What Is Truvada?
Truvada is a prescription medicine approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the following uses:
Truvada contains two different HIV medicines combined in one pill: emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate. Both medicines belong to the class (group) of HIV medicines called nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTIs). NRTIs block an HIV enzyme called reverse transcriptase. (An enzyme is a protein that starts or increases the speed of a chemical reaction.) By blocking reverse transcriptase, the two drugs in combination prevent HIV from multiplying and can reduce the amount of HIV in the body.
Whether you are taking Truvada for HIV prevention or in combination with other HIV medicines for HIV treatment, don't cut down on, skip, or stop taking your HIV medicine(s) unless your health care provider tells you to.
What Should I Tell My Health Care Provider Before Taking Truvada?
Before taking Truvada, tell your health care provider:
Before taking Truvada to reduce your risk of getting HIV, you must get tested to be sure you are HIV negative. Do not take Truvada to reduce the risk of getting HIV unless you are confirmed to be HIV negative.
Before taking Truvada for PrEP, also tell your health care provider:
While taking Truvada for PrEP, you will get tested for HIV at least every 3 months.
How Should I Take Truvada?
Truvada comes in tablet form in the following strengths:
Take Truvada according to your health care provider's instructions.
Take Truvada with or without food at the same time each day.
If you take Truvada for PrEP, take it every day and not just when you think that you were exposed to HIV. Always combine use of PrEP with condoms and other HIV prevention methods.
If you take too much Truvada, 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 Truvada, see the FDA drug label from DailyMed. (DailyMed is a federal website that includes the most recent drug labels submitted to FDA.)
What Should I Do if I Forget a Dose?
If you miss a dose of Truvada, 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 more than one dose of Truvada in a day. Do not take two doses at the same time to make up for a missed dose.
What Side Effects Can Truvada Cause?
Truvada 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 from Truvada can be serious. Serious side effects of Truvada include buildup of lactic acid in the blood (lactic acidosis) and liver problems. (See the WARNING box above.)
Other possible side effects of Truvada 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 Truvada. To learn more about possible side effects of Truvada, read the drug label or package insert or talk to your health care provider or pharmacist.
You can report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 (1-800-332-1088) or online at www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/medwatch/.
How Should Truvada Be Stored?
Where Can I Find More Information About Truvada?
More information about Truvada is available:
Gilead Sciences, Inc.
The above Patient Version drug summary is based on the following FDA label(s): Tablet (film coated).
[Note from TheBody: This article was created by AIDSinfo, who last updated it on March 13, 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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