Atripla is an antiviral medication that is used to treat HIV by stopping the viral cells from reproducing in the human body. It contains efavirenz, emtricitabine, and tenofovir. It is used to treat HIV symptoms in adults and children over 12 years of age. HIV is known to cause AIDS, but note that Atripla is not a cure for either disease.
Atripla is known to rarely cause a serious disorder known as lactic acidosis. Get emergency medical attention if you exhibit any symptoms of this. Symptoms include muscle pain and weakness, numbness in your extremities, difficulty breathing, nausea and vomiting, rapid, uneven pulse, dizziness and exhaustion.
Atripla could also cause severe liver problems, which could even result in death. Call your doctor immediately if you show symptoms of liver disorders. Symptoms include nausea, abdominal pain, no appetite, itchiness, dark urine and stools, yellowish skin and yellowish eyes.
If you are pregnant, do not use Atripla. It will harm your unborn child. If you are sexually active, use at least one barrier form of birth control to prevent pregnancy.
If you suffer from Hep B, you might develop liver disease symptoms after treatment with this medication has ceased. You may want to check liver function for a few months after.
Atripla has the ability to impair your reaction speed and cognitive processes. If you are on it, exercise great caution when driving or doing anything that needs focus.
Atripla should be taken exactly as the doctor has prescribed. Follow all of the instructions you have been given. Never take it in larger or smaller doses than the recommended amount. Before bedtime, take this medication on an empty stomach. You will also need to regularly test your blood and your liver function.
Atripla can cause you to have a false positive result on a drug screening test. If you need to provide urine for this purpose, tell the staff that you are on the drug. Take your doses on time and regularly for the best effect. Make sure you refill your prescription before it runs out completely.
Missed doses and overdose
If you miss a dose, take the missed dose as soon as you know. However, if it is close to your next dose time, skip the one you missed. Never take extra Atripla to make up for the dose you missed. If you overdose, contact your local poison hotline and seek emergency medical assistance immediately.
Common side effects include:
Changes in the location of body fat
More serious side effects include:
Increased thirst and urine production, constipation, no urination, loss of appetite (all symptoms of kidney malfunction)
Sore throat and flu symptoms, unusual bleeding
Nausea, pain in the upper abdomen, itchiness, no appetite, dark urine, pale stools and jaundice (symptoms of liver malfunction)
Strange behaviour, irritability, depression, tendencies towards violence, suicide and self-harm
Hallucinations and seizures
Skin reactions, fever, swelling, burning in the eyes, red rashes and peeling skin
Call your doctor immediately if you experience these side effects.
Signs of new infections, chest pains, cold, genital or anal sores, rapid pulse, anxiety and irritability as well as impotence are all signs that you need to stop using Atripla. Stop immediately if you notice signs of an allergic reaction like difficulty breathing, hives, itchiness and swelling of the facial area.
Do not take Atripla if you are on any other medication with emtricitabine, lamivudine or tenofovir, like Combivir, Epivir, Trizivir or Truvada.