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Boceprevir Side Effects

In Summary

Commonly reported side effects of boceprevir include: anemia, dizziness, dyspnea on exertion, and neutropenia. See below for a comprehensive list of adverse effects.

For the Consumer

Applies to boceprevir: oral capsule

Along with its needed effects, boceprevir may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur while taking boceprevir:

More Common

  • Black, tarry stools
  • chills
  • cough
  • difficult or labored breathing
  • fever
  • lower back or side pain
  • painful or difficult urination
  • pale skin
  • sore throat
  • tightness in the chest
  • troubled breathing with exertion
  • ulcers, sores, or white spots in the mouth
  • unusual bleeding or bruising
  • unusual tiredness or weakness

Some side effects of boceprevir may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

More Common

  • Change in taste
  • decreased appetite
  • diarrhea
  • difficulty with moving
  • dizziness
  • dry mouth
  • dry skin
  • hair loss or thinning of the hair
  • irritability
  • lack or loss of strength
  • loss of taste
  • muscle pain or stiffness
  • nausea
  • pain in the joints
  • rash
  • trouble sleeping
  • vomiting

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to boceprevir: oral capsule


This drug must be administered in combination with peginterferon alfa and ribavirin. The manufacturer product information for peginterferon alfa and ribavirin should be consulted for associated side effects.

Serious side effects (including anemia and neutropenia) have been reported in 11% of patients receiving boceprevir combination therapy compared to 8% of patients receiving peginterferon alfa plus ribavirin alone. The side effects reported most frequently were fatigue, anemia, nausea, headache, and dysgeusia. Therapy was discontinued due to side effects in 13% of patients using boceprevir combination therapy and 12% of patients using peginterferon alfa plus ribavirin alone. The side effects leading to discontinuation most often were anemia and fatigue.[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Anemia (up to 50%), decreased hemoglobin (up to 49%), decreased neutrophils (up to 31%), neutropenia (up to 25%)

Common (1% to 10%): Decreased platelets, leukopenia, thrombocytopenia, pancytopenia, agranulocytosis

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Hemorrhagic diathesis, lymphadenopathy, lymphopenia

Rare (less than 0.1%): Hemolysis[Ref]

Decreased hemoglobin (less than 10 g/dL: 49%; less than 8.5 g/dL: up to 10%), decreased neutrophils (less than 0.75 x 10[9]/L: up to 31%; less than 0.5 x 10[9]/L: up to 8%), and decreased platelets (less than 50 x 10[9]/L: up to 4%; less than 25 x 10[9]/L: less than 1%) have been reported.

Agranulocytosis, pancytopenia, and thrombocytopenia have also been reported during postmarketing experience.[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Serious acute hypersensitivity reactions (e.g., urticaria, angioedema)[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Fatigue (up to 58%), chills (up to 34%), pyrexia (up to 32%), influenza-like illness (up to 23%), asthenia (up to 21%), decreased weight (11%)

Common (1% to 10%): Pain, peripheral edema, chest discomfort, chest pain, malaise, feeling of body temperature change, mucosal dryness

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Feeling abnormal, impaired healing, noncardiac chest pain, staphylococcal infection, candidiasis, ear infection, ear discomfort, flushing, pallor, peripheral coldness

Rare (less than 0.1%): Otitis media, sepsis[Ref]

Sepsis has also been reported during postmarketing experience.[Ref]


Mouth ulceration and stomatitis have also been reported during postmarketing experience.[Ref]

Very common (10% or more): Nausea (up to 46%), dysgeusia (up to 44%), diarrhea (up to 25%), vomiting (up to 20%), dry mouth (up to 15%)

Common (1% to 10%): Abdominal pain, upper abdominal pain, constipation, gastroesophageal reflux disease, hemorrhoids, abdominal discomfort, abdominal distention, anorectal discomfort, aphthous stomatitis, cheilitis, dyspepsia, flatulence, glossodynia, mouth ulceration, oral pain, stomatitis, tooth disorder, oral fungal infection

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Lower abdominal pain, gastritis, pancreatitis, anal pruritus, colitis, dysphagia, discolored feces, frequent bowl movements, gingival bleeding, gingival pain, gingivitis, glossitis, dry lip, odynophagia, proctalgia, rectal hemorrhage, salivary hypersecretion, sensitivity of teeth, tongue discoloration, tongue ulceration, gastroenteritis

Rare (less than 0.1%): Pancreatic insufficiency[Ref]

Nervous system

Very common (10% or more): Headache (up to 45%), dizziness (up to 19%)

Common (1% to 10%): Hypoesthesia, paresthesia, syncope, amnesia, attention disturbance, memory impairment, migraine, parosmia, tremor, vertigo, tinnitus

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Peripheral neuropathy, cognitive disorder, hyperesthesia, lethargy, loss of consciousness, mental impairment, neuralgia, presyncope, deafness, impaired hearing

Rare (less than 0.1%): Cerebral ischemia, encephalopathy[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Insomnia (up to 34%), irritability (up to 22%), depression (up to 21%), anxiety (12%)

Common (1% to 10%): Affect lability, agitation, libido disorder, altered mood, sleep disorder

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Aggression, homicidal ideation, panic attack, paranoia, substance abuse, suicidal ideation, abnormal behavior, anger, apathy, confusional state, mental status changes, restlessness

Rare (less than 0.1%): Bipolar disorder, completed suicide, suicide attempt, auditory hallucination, visual hallucination, psychiatric decompensation[Ref]


Urticaria has also been reported during postmarketing experience.[Ref]

Very common (10% or more): Alopecia (up to 27%), dry skin (up to 22%), rash (up to 17%)

Common (1% to 10%): Dermatitis, eczema, erythema, hyperhidrosis, night sweats, psoriasis, erythematous rash, macular rash, maculopapular rash, papular rash, pruritic rash, skin lesion, cellulitis, herpes simplex

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Photosensitivity reaction, skin ulcer, urticaria, fungal skin infection, onychomycosis, skin infection

Postmarketing reports: Angioedema, drug rash with eosinophilia and systemic symptoms (DRESS) syndrome, exfoliative rash, exfoliative dermatitis, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, toxic skin eruption, toxicoderma[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Decreased appetite/anorexia (up to 26%)

Common (1% to 10%): Dehydration, hyperglycemia, hypertriglyceridemia, hyperuricemia

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Hypokalemia, appetite disorder, diabetes mellitus, gout, hypercalcemia

Rare (less than 0.1%): Non-acute porphyria

Frequency not reported: Increased uric acid, increased triglycerides, increased cholesterol[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Myalgia (up to 24%), arthralgia (up to 23%)

Common (1% to 10%): Back pain, pain in extremity, muscle spasms, muscular weakness, neck pain

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Musculoskeletal chest pain, arthritis, bone pain, joint swelling, musculoskeletal pain[Ref]


Pneumonia has also been reported during postmarketing experience.[Ref]

Very common (10% or more): Exertional dyspnea (up to 11%), cough, dyspnea

Common (1% to 10%): Bronchitis, influenza, sinusitis, epistaxis, nasal congestion, oropharyngeal pain, respiratory tract congestion, sinus congestion, wheezing

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Pneumonia, nasopharyngitis, pharyngitis, respiratory tract infection, rhinitis, pleuritic pain, pulmonary embolism, dry throat, dysphonia, increased upper airway secretion, oropharyngeal blistering

Rare (less than 0.1%): Epiglottitis, pleural fibrosis, orthopnea, respiratory failure[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Palpitations, hypotension, hypertension

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Cardiac murmur, increased heart rate, tachycardia, arrhythmia, cardiovascular disorder, deep vein thrombosis

Rare (less than 0.1%): Acute myocardial infarction, atrial fibrillation, coronary artery disease, pericarditis, pericardial effusion, venous thrombosis


Common (1% to 10%): Goiter, hypothyroidism

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Hyperthyroidism


Common (1% to 10%): Pollakiuria, erectile dysfunction

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Urinary tract infection, dysuria, nocturia, amenorrhea, menorrhagia, metrorrhagia

Rare (less than 0.1%): Aspermia


Common (1% to 10%): Dry eye, retinal exudates, blurred vision, visual impairment

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Retinal ischemia, retinopathy, abnormal sensation in eye, conjunctival hemorrhage, conjunctivitis, eye pain, eye pruritus, eye swelling, eyelid edema, increased lacrimation, ocular hyperemia, photophobia

Rare (less than 0.1%): Papilledema


Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Hyperbilirubinemia

Rare (less than 0.1%): Cholecystitis


Rare (less than 0.1%): Sarcoidosis


Rare (less than 0.1%): Thyroid neoplasm (nodules)


1. Cerner Multum, Inc. "UK Summary of Product Characteristics." O 0

2. "Telaprevir (Incivek) and boceprevir (Victrelis) for chronic hepatitis C." Med Lett Drugs Ther 53 (2011): 57-9

3. Cerner Multum, Inc. "Australian Product Information." O 0

4. "Product Information. Victrelis (boceprevir)." Schering-Plough Corporation, Kenilworth, NJ.

5. Chang MH, Gordon LA, Fung HB "Boceprevir: a protease inhibitor for the treatment of hepatitis C." Clin Ther 34 (2012): 2021-38

6. Rowe IA, Mutimer DJ "Protease inhibitors for treatment of genotype 1 hepatitis C virus infection." BMJ 343 (2011): d6972

Further information

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

Some side effects may not be reported. You may report them to the FDA.