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Truvada

Generic Name: Emtricitabine and Tenofovir Disoproxil Fumarate (em trye SYE ta been & ten OF oh vir dye soe PROX il FUE ma rate)
Brand Name: Truvada

Medically reviewed on September 5, 2018

Warning

For all patients taking this medicine:
  • Hepatitis B has gotten worse when Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) was stopped in some people with hepatitis B. Close follow-up for a few months is needed when therapy is stopped in people who have hepatitis B. Do not stop taking Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) without calling your doctor. Talk with your doctor.
  • Hepatitis B testing needs to be done as you were told by the doctor. Talk with the doctor.
For HIV negative patients taking this medicine to lower the chance of getting HIV through sex:
  • You must have a negative HIV test before taking Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) and at least every 3 months while you take it. Tell your doctor if you think you have been exposed to HIV. Call your doctor right away if you have fever, headache, feel tired, joint or muscle aches, throwing up, loose stools (diarrhea), sore throat, rash, night sweats, or swollen glands. Call your doctor right away if you had any of these signs within 1 month before you start taking Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate). Talk with your doctor.

Uses of Truvada:

See also: Atripla
  • It is used to treat HIV infection.
  • It is used in HIV negative patients to lower the chance of getting HIV infection through sex.

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

For all patients taking Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate):

  • If you have an allergy to emtricitabine, tenofovir, or any other part of Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate).
  • 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 kidney disease or are on dialysis.
  • If you are taking another drug that has the same drug in it.
  • If you are taking any of these drugs: Adefovir or lamivudine.
  • If you are taking any drugs that can raise the chance of kidney problems. There are many drugs that can do this. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you are not sure.
  • If you are breast-feeding or plan to breast-feed.

For HIV negative patients taking Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) to lower the chance of getting HIV through sex:

  • If you have not been tested for HIV.

This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate).

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 Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) 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 Truvada?

For all patients taking Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate):

  • Tell all of your health care providers that you take Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate). This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
  • Bone problems like bone pain, soft bones, and thin bones have happened with Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate). This may lead to broken bones. You may need to have a test to check your bones. Talk with your doctor.
  • Take calcium and vitamin D as you were told by your doctor.
  • Have blood work checked as you have been told by the doctor. Talk with the doctor.
  • Have your urine checked as you have been told by your doctor.
  • Kidney problems like kidney failure have happened with Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate). Tell your doctor if you have ever had kidney problems.
  • 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.
  • This medicine may rarely cause swollen liver and an acid health problem in the blood. This may be deadly in some cases. The chance may be higher in women, in overweight people, and in people who have taken drugs like this one for a long time. Talk with your doctor.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) while you are pregnant.

For patients taking Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) to treat HIV infection:

  • This medicine is not a cure for HIV. Stay under the care of your doctor.
  • If giving to your child, the dose of Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) 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.

For HIV negative patients taking Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) to lower the chance of getting HIV through sex:

  • This medicine does not always prevent HIV. It needs to be used as part of a program that has other measures to help prevent HIV. This includes safer sex habits, testing for diseases passed by having sex, and talking with sex partners who have HIV about their HIV treatment. Talk with the doctor for more information.

How is this medicine (Truvada) best taken?

Use Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.

  • Take Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) at the same time of day.
  • Take with or without food.
  • Keep taking Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) 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 Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) 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:

For all patients taking Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate):

  • 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 kidney problems like unable to pass urine, change in how much urine is passed, blood in the urine, or a big weight gain.
  • 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.
  • Signs of too much lactic acid in the blood (lactic acidosis) like fast breathing, fast heartbeat, a heartbeat that does not feel normal, very bad upset stomach or throwing up, feeling very sleepy, shortness of breath, feeling very tired or weak, very bad dizziness, feeling cold, or muscle pain or cramps.
  • Low mood (depression).
  • Bone pain.
  • Muscle pain or weakness.
  • Pain in arms or legs.

For patients taking Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) to treat HIV infection:

  • 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 Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate). Tell your doctor right away if you have any new signs after you start Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate), even after taking it for several months. This includes signs of infection like fever, sore throat, weakness, cough, or shortness of breath.

What are some other side effects of Truvada?

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:

For patients taking Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) to treat HIV infection:

  • Upset stomach.
  • Loose stools (diarrhea).
  • Not able to sleep.
  • Dizziness.
  • Headache.
  • Strange or odd dreams.
  • Feeling tired or weak.

For HIV negative patients taking Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) to lower the chance of getting HIV through sex:

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 Truvada?

  • Store in the original container at room temperature.
  • Keep lid tightly closed.
  • 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.
  • 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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