Abacavir

generic for Ziagen

Abacavir Side Effects

See also Warning and How to Use sections.

Trouble sleeping or loss of appetite may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.

As your immune system gets stronger, it can begin to fight off infections you already had, possibly causing disease symptoms to come back. You could also have symptoms if your immune system becomes overactive. This reaction may happen at any time (soon after starting HIV treatment or many months later). Get medical help right away if you have any serious symptoms, including: unexplained weight loss, severe tiredness, muscle aches/weakness that doesn't go away, headaches that are severe or don't go away, joint pain, numbness/tingling of the hands/feet/arms/legs, vision changes, signs of infection (such as fever, chills, swollen lymph nodes, trouble breathing, cough, non-healing skin sores), signs of an overactive thyroid (such as irritability, nervousness, heat intolerance, fast/pounding/irregular heartbeat, bulging eyes, unusual growth in the neck/thyroid known as a goiter), signs of a certain nerve problem known as Guillain-Barre syndrome (such as trouble breathing/swallowing/moving your eyes, drooping face, paralysis, trouble speaking).

Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: mental/mood changes (depression, anxiety).

Rarely, this medication has caused severe (sometimes fatal) liver problems and a buildup of lactic acid in the blood (lactic acidosis). These serious side effects may occur more often in women and obese patients. Get medical help right away if you have any of the following serious symptoms, including: symptoms of liver problems (such as nausea/vomiting that doesn't stop, stomach/abdominal pain, yellowing eyes/skin, dark urine), symptoms of lactic acidosis (such as deep/rapid breathing, drowsiness, nausea/vomiting).

This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

In the US -

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch.

In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
  • hypertriglyceridemia
  • lactic acidosis
  • anemia
  • thrombocytopenic disorder
  • depression
  • Guillain-Barre syndrome
  • acute myocardial infarction
  • hypotension
  • pharyngitis
  • upper respiratory infection
  • pneumonia
  • bronchitis
  • acute respiratory distress syndrome
  • steatosis of liver
  • hepatitis
  • renal failure
  • erythema multiforme
  • toxic epidermal necrolysis
  • Stevens-Johnson syndrome
  • arthralgia
  • myalgia
  • dizziness
  • sleep disorder
  • drug fever
  • fatigue
  • chills
  • skin rash
  • edema
  • anorexia
  • headache disorder
  • dyspnea
  • cough
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • diarrhea
  • hepatomegaly
  • abnormal hepatic function tests
  • anaphylaxis
  • hypersensitivity drug reaction
  • paresthesia
  • malaise
  • acute abdominal pain
  • polymyositis
  • pancreatitis
  • Graves' disease
  • multiple organ failure
  • dream disorder
  • lipodystrophy associated with human immunodeficiency virus infection
  • musculoskeletal pain
  • symptoms of anxiety
  • increased alanine transaminase
  • increased aspartate transaminase

Drug Interactions

Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval.

Some products that may interact with this drug include: alcohol, methadone, orlistat.

This medication must not be taken with other medications that contain abacavir. Check the labels on all your other prescription medications to make sure they do not contain abacavir. If you have any questions, consult your doctor or pharmacist.