Viread (also known as tenofovir) is a drug used to combat viruses like the HIV or Hepatitis B virus by preventing them from reproducing in the human body.
It is used in the treatment of HIV, which can lead to AIDS. It is also used to stop the Hepatitis B virus from multiplying inside the body. Viread is not a cure for HIV or AIDS.
Viread is known to cause a severe condition known as lactic acidosis which can be fatal if untreated. If you experience any symptoms, call EMS immediately.
Symptoms of lactic acidosis include muscular pain, weakness, numbness in the extremities, difficulty breathing, abdominal pain, nausea, rapid pulse and dizziness.
This disease is more likely to happen in people who are overweight, and in women. It is also more likely with long-term exposure to HIV drugs.
In addition to this, Viread could also lead to liver problems which can also be fatal. Call your doctor and EMS if you see symptoms like nausea, upper abdominal pain, itchiness, dark urine or jaundice.
Viread is not known to effect unborn children adversely. However, it is possible for an unborn baby to contract HIV during pregnancy without treatment.
Viread can also be transmitted to a child through nursing. Make sure that you do not feed the child while taking Viread for treating Hep B.
Never feed your child breast milk if you have HIV. It is very easy for the virus to pass into a healthy child through the milk.
Viread should never be given to an HIV positive child below 2 years of age. If a child has Hep B, do not give them Viread if they are below 12 years of age.
Before the treatment course begins, your doctor will test you for both Hep B and HIV to make sure you don’t have both or the wrong diseases.
When being treated, make sure you follow the instructions your doctor has given to you. Never take larger or smaller doses than your doctor has told you to.
You can take Viread pills before or after meals. If you are taking the powdered form, do it with a soft food like yogurt or baby food. Never mix it in a fluid.
Inform your doctor about any changes in body weight. The dosage is prescribed according to the weight, especially in young children.
Missed doses and overdose
If you miss a dosage of Viread, make sure that you take it as soon as you can, or when you remember. However, if it is nearly time for the next dose, ignore the one you missed.
Never take extra doses of the drug to make up for what you missed. This can lead to an overdose. If you overdose, contact EMS and your local poison hotline immediately.
Common side effects include:
Mild pain in the stomach
Nausea and diarrhea (mild)
Depression and weakness
Dizziness and headaches
Itchiness and mild rashes
Changes in the shape of fat
Severe side effects include:
Lactic acidosis (fatal if untreated)
Sore throat, flu and unusual bleeding
Kidney problems (thirst, constipation)
Liver problems (jaundice, dark urine, stomach pain and nausea)
Weakened immune system
Fever, sweating, sores
Difficulty breathing and chest pains
Thyroid problems and impotence
Contact your doctor immediately if you notice these side effects.
Stop taking the drug immediately if you notice any allergic reaction, such as hives, difficulty breathing and swelling of the facial area.
Avoid taking Viread in conjunction with antiviral medication, antibiotics, pain and arthritis medicines and chemotherapy.
Do not use with other HIV medication including: