Skip to main content

Does Biktarvy cause acne?

Medically reviewed by Leigh Ann Anderson, PharmD. Last updated on Aug 18, 2021.

Official answer


Acne has not been reported as a side effect of Biktarvy in clinical studies. Rash is an uncommon side effect that occurred in less than 2% of patients taking this medicine. Other skin side effects, such as angioedema, Stevens-Johnson syndrome / toxic epidermal necrolysis, and urticaria (hives) have also been reported.

In general, Biktarvy is well tolerated by most patients. The most common side effects in 634 adults in clinical trials were diarrhea (6%), nausea (6%), and headache (5%). These side effects tend to be mild and tend to go away in a few days or weeks. If your side effects are severe or do not go away, contact your doctor right away.

In studies, this medicine was stopped due to side effects in only 1% of patients new to HIV treatment.

Other side effects

After Biktarvy was approved, certain side effects of the skin and subcutaneous tissue (under the skin), some of which are serious, were reported in Biktarvy or products containing tenofovir alafenamide (TAF), one of the active ingredients in Biktarvy.

These include:

Because these side effects were reported voluntarily, it is not possible to know how often these side effects occur or if Biktarvy was the cause of these reported side effects.

Does Biktarvy cause allergic reactions?

Allergic reactions can happen with most drugs, including Biktarvy.

Call your doctor right away if you think you are having an allergic reaction, as this could be life-threatening. Symptoms may include:

  • skin rash, itching, or flushing and redness
  • swelling under your skin (especially around your eyelids, lips, hands, or feet)
  • swelling around your face, tongue, mouth or throat
  • trouble breathing.

Biktarvy (bictegravir / emtricitabine / tenofovir alafenamide) is a prescription medicine for treatment of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). It is taken as an oral tablet once per day. It is used in adults and children with HIV-1 who weigh at least 55 lbs (25 kg) and are either:

  • new to HIV-1 treatment, OR
  • replacing their current treatment regimen

Biktarvy contains 50 mg of bictegravir (BIC), 200 mg of emtricitabine (FTC), and 25 mg of tenofovir alafenamide (TAF).

This is not all the information you need to know about Biktarvy for safe use. Review the full Biktarvy information here, and review this information with your health care provider.


Related medical questions

Drug information

Related support groups