An Overview of Zerit (Stavudine, d4T)
September 13, 2012
Brand Name: Zerit
Stavudine can cause serious, life-threatening side effects. These include lactic acidosis (build up of acid in the blood), liver problems, and pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas).
Contact your health care provider right away if you have any of the following symptoms that may signal lactic acidosis:
Contact your health care provider right away if you have any of the following symptoms that may signal liver problems:
Contact your health care provider right away if you have any of the following symptoms that may signal pancreatitis:
While taking stavudine, it is important to keep all of your appointments with your health care provider.
What is stavudine?
Stavudine is a prescription medicine approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of HIV infection in adults, children, and infants. Stavudine is always used in combination with other anti-HIV medicines.
Stavudine is a type of anti-HIV medicine called a nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NRTI). NRTIs work by blocking HIV reverse transcriptase, an HIV enzyme. This prevents HIV from replicating and lowers the amount of HIV in the blood.
Stavudine does not cure HIV/AIDS. It is not known if stavudine reduces the risk of passing HIV to other people.
What should I tell my health care provider before taking stavudine?
Before taking stavudine, tell your health care provider:
How should I take stavudine?
Stavudine comes in the following forms and strengths:
An extended-release capsule form of stavudine (brand name: Zerit XR) was approved by FDA in December 2002, but manufacturing of this form is currently discontinued in the United States.
Take stavudine according to your health care provider's instructions.
Take stavudine with or without food. When giving stavudine oral solution to a child, shake the bottle well before measuring each dose.
Always take stavudine in combination with other anti-HIV medicines.
If you take too much stavudine, contact your local poison control center (1-800-222-1222) or go to the nearest hospital emergency room right away.
For more information on how to take stavudine, 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?
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 stavudine cause?
Stavudine can cause serious, life-threatening side effects. These include lactic acidosis (buildup of acid in the blood), liver problems, and pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas). (See the WARNING above.)
Other possible side effects of stavudine 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 stavudine. Ask your health care provider or pharmacist for more information on possible side effects of stavudine.
How should stavudine be stored?
Where can I find more information about stavudine?
More information about stavudine is available:
This article was provided by AIDSinfo. Visit the AIDSinfo website to find out more about their activities and publications.