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Norvir Capsules

Generic Name: Ritonavir Capsules (ri TOE na vir)
Brand Name: Norvir

Medically reviewed on July 4, 2018

Warning

  • Very bad and sometimes deadly side effects may happen if you take Norvir (ritonavir capsules) with certain other drugs like some drugs that are used for a heartbeat that is not normal, sleep, or migraines. Be sure to talk to your doctor and pharmacist about all the drugs you take.

Uses of Norvir:

What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take Norvir?

  • If you have an allergy to ritonavir or any other part of Norvir (ritonavir capsules).
  • If you are allergic to any drugs like this one, any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
  • If you have liver disease.
  • If you take any drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) that must not be taken with Norvir (ritonavir capsules), like certain drugs that are used for high cholesterol, migraines, or mood problems. There are many drugs that must not be taken with Norvir (ritonavir capsules).
  • If you are taking St. John's wort. Do not take St. John's wort with Norvir (ritonavir capsules). This medicine may not work as well.
  • If you are breast-feeding. Do not breast-feed while you take Norvir (ritonavir capsules).

This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with Norvir (ritonavir capsules).

Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take Norvir (ritonavir capsules) with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.

What are some things I need to know or do while I take Norvir?

  • Tell all of your health care providers that you take Norvir (ritonavir capsules). This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
  • This medicine interacts with many other drugs. The chance of Norvir (ritonavir capsules)'s side effects may be raised or how well Norvir (ritonavir capsules) works may be lowered. The chance of the other drugs' side effects may also be raised. This may include very bad, life-threatening, or deadly side effects. Check with your doctor and pharmacist to make sure that it is safe for you to take Norvir (ritonavir capsules) with all of your other drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins).
  • High blood sugar has happened with Norvir (ritonavir capsules). This includes diabetes that is new or worse. Talk with the doctor.
  • Check your blood sugar as you have been told by your doctor.
  • This medicine may cause high cholesterol and triglyceride levels. Talk with the doctor.
  • Some people with hemophilia have had times of more bleeding when taking drugs like this one. If you have hemophilia, talk with your doctor.
  • Have blood work checked as you have been told by the doctor. Talk with the doctor.
  • This medicine is not a cure for HIV. Stay under the care of your doctor.
  • This medicine does not stop the spread of diseases like HIV or hepatitis that are passed through blood or having sex. Do not have any kind of sex without using a latex or polyurethane condom. Do not share needles or other things like toothbrushes or razors. Talk with your doctor.
  • Changes in your immune system can happen when you start taking drugs to treat HIV. If you have an infection that you did not know you had, it may show up when you take Norvir (ritonavir capsules). Tell your doctor right away if you have any new signs after you start Norvir (ritonavir capsules), even after taking it for several months. This includes signs of infection like fever, sore throat, weakness, cough, or shortness of breath.
  • If giving to your child, the dose of Norvir (ritonavir capsules) may need to be changed as your child's weight changes. Have your child's weight checked often. Talk with the doctor before changing your child's dose.
  • Birth control pills and other hormone-based birth control may not work as well to prevent pregnancy. Use some other kind of birth control also like a condom when taking Norvir (ritonavir capsules).
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using Norvir (ritonavir capsules) while you are pregnant.

How is this medicine (Norvir) best taken?

Use Norvir (ritonavir capsules) as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.

  • Take with meals.
  • Keep taking Norvir (ritonavir capsules) as you have been told by your doctor or other health care provider, even if you feel well.
  • It is important that you do not miss or skip a dose of Norvir (ritonavir capsules) during treatment.

What do I do if I miss a dose?

  • Take a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
  • If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time.
  • Do not take 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.
  • If you are not sure what to do if you miss a dose, call your doctor.

See also: Dosage Information (in more detail)

What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:

  • Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Signs of high blood sugar like confusion, feeling sleepy, more thirst, more hungry, passing urine more often, flushing, fast breathing, or breath that smells like fruit.
  • Very bad or long-lasting loose stools (diarrhea). This may lead to fluid and electrolyte problems.
  • Chest pain or pressure or a fast heartbeat.
  • A heartbeat that does not feel normal.
  • Dizziness or passing out.
  • Flushing.
  • Shortness of breath.
  • Any unexplained bruising or bleeding.
  • Sweating a lot.
  • Feeling very tired or weak.
  • Swelling.
  • Change in eyesight.
  • Blurred eyesight.
  • Change in body fat.
  • A very bad skin reaction (Stevens-Johnson syndrome/toxic epidermal necrolysis) may happen. It can cause very bad health problems that may not go away, and sometimes death. Get medical help right away if you have signs like red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin (with or without fever); red or irritated eyes; or sores in your mouth, throat, nose, or eyes.
  • Very bad and sometimes deadly liver problems have happened with Norvir (ritonavir capsules). Call your doctor right away if you have signs of liver problems like dark urine, feeling tired, not hungry, upset stomach or stomach pain, light-colored stools, throwing up, or yellow skin or eyes.
  • Very bad and sometimes deadly pancreas problems (pancreatitis) have happened with Norvir (ritonavir capsules). Call your doctor right away if you have very bad stomach pain, very bad back pain, or very upset stomach or throwing up.

What are some other side effects of Norvir?

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:

  • Upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Loose stools (diarrhea).
  • Belly pain.
  • Gas.
  • Feeling tired or weak.
  • Change in taste.
  • Numbness or tingling in the hands or feet.
  • Numbness or tingling around the mouth.
  • Muscle or joint pain.
  • Back pain.

These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.

You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may also report side effects at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

How do I store and/or throw out Norvir?

  • Store in the original container at room temperature or in a refrigerator. If stored at room temperature, throw away any part not used after 30 days.
  • Do not freeze.
  • Protect from light.
  • Protect from heat.
  • Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
  • Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Throw away unused or expired drugs. Do not flush down a toilet or pour down a drain unless you are told to do so. Check with your pharmacist if you have questions about the best way to throw out drugs. There may be drug take-back programs in your area.

Consumer information use

  • If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
  • Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
  • Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
  • Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including prescription or OTC, natural products, or vitamins.
  • Some drugs may have another patient information leaflet. Check with your pharmacist. If you have any questions about Norvir (ritonavir capsules), please talk with your doctor, nurse, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

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