TRUVADA (Emtricitabine/Tenofovir)

TRUVADA (Emtricitabine/Tenofovir)

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What is this medication?

TRUVADA (Emtricitabine/Tenofovir)
Antiretroviral, Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitor

TRUVADA is a combination of EMTRIVA (Emtricitabine) and VIREAD (Tenofovir), both nucleoside analog HIV-1 reverse transcriptase inhibitors. TRUVADA (Emtricitabine/Tenofovir) is indicated in combination with other antiretroviral agents for the treatment of HIV-1 infection in adults and pediatric patients.

Lactic acidosis and severe hepatomegaly with steatosis, including fatal cases, have been reported with the use of nucleoside analogs, including VIREAD (Tenofovir), a component of TRUVADA (Emtricitabine/Tenofovir). TRUVADA is not approved for the treatment of chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection. Severe acute exacerbations of hepatitis B have been reported in patients coinfected with HIV-1 and HBV who have discontinued TRUVADA. Therefore, hepatic function should be monitored closely in HBV-infected patients who discontinue TRUVADA. If appropriate, initiation of anti-hepatitis B therapy may be warranted. TRUVADA used for a PrEP indication must only be prescribed to individuals confirmed to be HIV-negative immediately prior to initial use and periodically during use. Drug-resistant HIV-1 variants have been identified with the use of TRUVADA for a PrEP indication following undetected acute HIV-1 infection. Do not initiate TRUVADA for a PrEP indication if signs or symptoms of acute HIV infection are present unless negative infection status is confirmed. 

How does this medication work? 

Emtricitabine is a nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor; cytosine analogue that is phosphorylated intracellularly to emtricitabine 5′-triphosphate which interferes with HIV viral RNA dependent DNA polymerase resulting in inhibition of viral replication.

Tenofovir disoproxil fumarate is a nucleotide reverse transcriptase inhibitor; analog of adenosine 5′-monophosphate that interferes with the HIV viral RNA dependent DNA polymerase resulting in inhibition of viral replication. TDF is first converted intracellularly by hydrolysis to tenofovir and subsequently phosphorylated to the active tenofovir diphosphate. Tenofovir inhibits replication of HBV by inhibiting HBV polymerase.

How should I take this medication? 

Oral: Take 1 tablet once daily.

How to Take: Take with or without food.

What should I watch for while using this medication?

Before starting TRUVADA (Emtricitabine/Tenofovir), make sure your physician is aware of any allergies or medications you currently take. The combination Emtricitabine/Tenofovir, can cause new onset or worsening renal impairment.  Assess creatinine clearance (CrCl) before initiating treatment.  Emtricitabine/Tenofovir has been associated with rare but serious adverse events such as a decrease in bone mineral density, immune reconstitution syndrome, lactic acidosis/hepatomegaly, osteomalacia, and renal toxicity.

What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose of medication, try to take it as soon as possible.  However, if it is almost time for your next dose, take only that scheduled dose.  Do not take double or extra doses.

How should I store this medication?

Keep out of the reach of children at all times. Store at room temperature, 59 to 86° F (15 to 30° C). Protect from light. Keep the container tightly closed.  Properly dispose of any unused medication after the expiration date.

What are the possible side effects of using this medication? 

Decreased bone mineral density, headache, weight loss, abdominal pain, decreased neutrophil count, abnormal serum phosphorus, insomnia, dizziness, depression, rash, hypercholesteremia, cough, rhinitis, weakness, diarrhea, nausea. 

Note this is not a complete list of side effects for TRUVADA (Emtricitabine/Tenofovir), only common ones.