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Triumeq

Generic name: abacavir, dolutegravir, and lamivudine (a BAK a vir, DOE loo TEG ra vir, la MIV ue deen)
Brand name: Triumeq
Drug class: Antiviral combinations

Medically reviewed by Philip Thornton, DipPharm. Last updated on May 7, 2021.

What is Triumeq?

Triumeq contain a combination of abacavir, dolutegravir, and lamivudine. Abacavir, dolutegravir, and lamivudine are antiviral medications that prevent human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) from multiplying in your body.

Triumeq is used to treat human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), the virus that can cause acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). This medicine is not a cure for HIV or AIDS.

Triumeq is for use in adults and children who weigh at least 88 pounds (40 kilograms).

Warnings

You should not take Triumeq if you have ever had an allergic reaction to any medicine that contains abacavir, or if you have a gene variation called HLA-B*5701 allele. Also, you should not use this medicine if you have moderate or severe liver disease, or if you are also taking dofetilide (Tikosyn).

Stop using Triumeq and call your doctor at once if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction to this medicine: fever; rash; nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain; general ill feeling, extreme tiredness, body aches; shortness of breath, cough, sore throat.

If you've ever had hepatitis B, it may become active or get worse after you stop using Triumeq. You may need frequent liver function tests for several months.

You may develop lactic acidosis, a dangerous build-up of lactic acid in your blood. Call your doctor or get emergency medical help if you have unusual muscle pain, trouble breathing, stomach pain, dizziness, feeling cold, or feeling very weak or tired.

Before taking this medicine

You should not use Triumeq if you are allergic to abacavir, dolutegravir, or lamivudine, or if:

  • you also take dofetilide (Tikosyn);

  • you have moderate or severe liver disease;

  • you have a gene variation called HLA-B*5701 allele (your doctor will test you for this); or

  • you have a history of allergic reaction to Combivir, Dutrebis, Epivir, Epzicom, Tivicay, Trizivir, or Ziagen.

To make sure Triumeq is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:

You may develop lactic acidosis, a dangerous build-up of lactic acid in your blood. This may be more likely if you have other medical conditions, if you are overweight, or if you are a woman. Ask your doctor about your risk.

You may need to have a negative pregnancy test before starting this treatment.

Abacavir, dolutegravir, or lamivudine could harm an unborn baby if you take this medicine at the time of conception or during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. Use effective birth control to prevent pregnancy, and tell your doctor if you become pregnant.

If you are pregnant, use your medications properly to control your infection. HIV can be passed to your baby if the virus is not controlled during pregnancy. Your name may be listed on a registry to track any effects of antiviral medicine on the baby.

Women with HIV or AIDS should not breast feed a baby. Even if your baby is born without HIV, the virus may be passed to the baby in your breast milk.

How should I take Triumeq?

Take Triumeq exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow all directions on your prescription label and read all medication guides or instruction sheets.

You may take Triumeq with or without food.

Triumeq comes with a Medication Guide and a Warning Card listing symptoms of an allergic reaction. Read this information and learn what symptoms to watch for. Keep the Wallet Card with you at all times.

You may need to take an extra daily dose of dolutegravir (Tivicay) if you take Triumeq with certain other medicines.

Use all HIV medications as directed and read all medication guides you receive. Do not change your dose or stop using a medicine without your doctor's advice. Every person with HIV should remain under the care of a doctor.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Keep the tablets in their original container, along with the packet or canister of moisture-absorbing preservative.

If you've ever had hepatitis B, this virus may become active or get worse in the months after you stop using Triumeq. You may need frequent liver function tests while using this medicine and for several months after your last dose.

Dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for HIV Infection:

1 tablet orally once a day

Use: For the treatment of HIV-1 infection

Usual Pediatric Dose for HIV Infection:

At least 40 kg: 1 tablet orally once a day

Use: For the treatment of HIV-1 infection

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the medicine as soon as you can, but skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next dose. Do not take two doses at one time.

Get your prescription refilled before you run out of medicine completely. If you miss several doses, you may have a dangerous or even fatal allergic reaction once you start taking this medication again.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

What should I avoid while taking Triumeq?

Using Triumeq will not prevent your disease from spreading. Do not have unprotected sex or share razors or toothbrushes. Talk with your doctor about safe ways to prevent HIV transmission during sex. Sharing drug or medicine needles is never safe, even for a healthy person.

Triumeq side effects

Call your doctor at once if you have symptoms of an allergic reaction from two or more of these specific side effect groups:

  • Group 1 - fever;

  • Group 2 - rash;

  • Group 3 - nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain;

  • Group 4 - general ill feeling, extreme tiredness, body aches;

  • Group 5 - shortness of breath, cough, sore throat.

Once you have had an allergic reaction to a medicine that contains abacavir or dolutegravir, you must never use it again. If you stop taking Triumeq for any reason, talk to your doctor before you start taking it again.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • other signs of allergic reaction - skin blisters or peeling, eye redness, swelling in your face or throat, trouble breathing;

  • lactic acidosis - unusual muscle pain, trouble breathing, stomach pain, vomiting, irregular heart rate, dizziness, feeling cold, or feeling very weak or tired; or

  • liver problems - swelling around your midsection, right-sided upper stomach pain, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).

Triumeq affects your immune system, which may cause certain side effects (even weeks or months after you've taken this medicine). Tell your doctor if you have:

  • signs of a new infection - fever, night sweats, swollen glands, cold sores, cough, wheezing, diarrhea, weight loss;

  • trouble speaking or swallowing, problems with balance or eye movement, weakness or prickly feeling; or

  • swelling in your neck or throat (enlarged thyroid), menstrual changes, impotence.

Common Triumeq side effects may include:

  • headache;

  • tiredness; or

  • trouble sleeping.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect Triumeq?

Sometimes it is not safe to use certain medications at the same time. Some drugs can affect your blood levels of other drugs you take, which may increase side effects or make the medications less effective.

Some medicines can make Triumeq much less effective when taken at the same time. If you take any of the following medicines, take your Triumeq dose 2 hours before or 6 hours after you take the other medicine.

Many drugs can interact with abacavir, dolutegravir, and lamivudine. This includes prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible interactions are listed here. Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any medicine you start or stop using.

Popular FAQ

Triumeq (dolutegravir, abacavir and lamivudine) is not approved to be used for HIV-1 pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP). Triumeq is used to treat (not prevent) HIV-1, the virus that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS).

The medications FDA-approved for PrEP are the two oral medicinesTruvada (tenofovir disoproxil fumarate and emtricitabine) or Descovy (emtricitabine and tenofovir alafenamide), and the long-acting intramuscular injection called Apretude (cabotegravir). Continue reading

Both Triumeq and Genvoya are combination one-tablet-a-day medicines that are considered first-line treatments for HIV-1 by the HHS guidelines. Because Triumeq does not contain cobicistat, an antiviral booster, it is less likely to interact with other medications and may have fewer side effects than Genvoya. People taking Genvoya do not need to be tested for the HLA-B*5701 gene, because it does not contain abacavir. Continue reading

Triumeq is unlikely to cause erectile dysfunction (ED), and ED is not listed as a side effect in the product information nor reported in post-marketing data – these are studies done after a drug has been approved. A review concluded that newer HIV combination treatments in use today have no clear-cut association with ED. Older HIV agents, such as zalcitabine (no longer in use) and enfuvirtide (rarely used) were known to cause ED. Using abacavir and raltegravir together had a weak association with ED, but no protease inhibitors appear to increase the risk. Triumeq contains three antivirals: abacavir and lamivudine and dolutegravir. Continue reading

Triumeq works quickly to suppress the HIV-1 virus and some people have reported an undetectable viral load within a month of starting Triumeq (this corresponds to an HIV‑1 RNA level of fewer than 50 copies/mL); however, results can vary among individuals. Research has shown that after 48 weeks of treatment, 88% of people had undetectable HIV‑1 RNA levels and after 144 weeks, 71% of patients have undetectable HIV-1 RNA. Continue reading

Weight gain is an uncommon side effect of Triumeq that has been reported in post-marketing reports – these are studies done after a drug has been approved. Weight gain was not noted as a side effect of Triumeq in clinical trials and is not documented as a side effect in the product information. Recent studies report that one in six people starting HIV treatment gain at least 10% in body weight over one to two years. The risk is higher in people who start treatment with a combination that contains the integrase inhibitors dolutegravir, bictegravir, or elvitegravir, or the NRTI tenofovir alafenamide (TAF). Trimueq contains dolutegravir. Continue reading

Hair loss and thinning of the hair are uncommon side effects of Triumeq that have been reported in post-marketing reports – these are studies done after a drug has been approved. Hair loss/hair thinning was not noted as a side effect of Triumeq in clinical trials and is not documented as a side effect in the product information. The incidence of hair loss/hair thinning with Triumeq is not known. Continue reading

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Further information

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use Triumeq only for the indication prescribed.

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