Lopinavir/Ritonavir (Lopimune 200/50 mg)
About the drug:
Lopinavir and Ritonavir are antiretroviral agents that fall into the category of drugs known as protease inhibitors. Both the drugs interfere with the virus reproduction to fight HIV or human immunodeficiency virus. The medication does not cure AIDS or destroy the virus. It only helps in preventing further damage by slowing down the progression of the disease. Also, the combination drug is not capable of reducing the risk of passing the infections on to others. A sufferer is still able to transfer the virus through sexual contact, sharing needles, or by blood transfer. Therefore, it is recommended to use precautionary measures to prevent passing HIV on to others.
Uses of the drug:
A combination of two protease inhibitors is prescribed for use in combination with other antiretroviral agents to treat HIV infection. It helps to control HIV infection from reproducing in the body. The active ingredients of the medicine do this by slowing down the spread of the infection in a sufferer?s body.
Working on the drug:
Lopinavir works by inhibiting HIV viral protease. The second active component of the medicine Ritonavir exerts its antiretroviral activity by inhibiting the action of HIV protease and preventing the cleavage of viral polyprotein. In this way, CD4+ cell count increases and viral load decreases, which slow down the progression of HIV infection.
Before you take the drug:
Do not take the drug if you:
Are pregnant or breastfeeding
Have liver problems
Are hypersensitive towards Lopinavir, Ritonavir, or other inactive ingredients of the medicine
Tell your doctor if you:
A history of hepatic impairment
Have known alcohol intolerance
A history of hepatitis
Ischemic heart disease
How much to take the drug?
The usual adult dose is two to three tablets twice daily. Take only as prescribed by your doctor. The combination medication can be taken with or without food. In case of stomach issues, you can take the tablet with food to avoid any problem. Do not crush or chew the tablet; it should be swallowed with water.
How long to take it?
Continue taking this antiretroviral medication for as long as your doctor tells you. The medicine is not a cure for HIV infection; it only controls the virus. Note that you will continue to develop infections or other infections associated with HIV during the treatment with Lopimune. Do not even try to change the daily dose of the drug without first discussing with your doctor. You should always take medicine to control the progression of HIV, no matter how much better you feel.
Immediately call your doctor for advice, or go to the nearest hospital if you have taken too many Lopimune tablets. Users are advised to do this even they do not develop any signs of overdose. It is necessary to take urgent medical help to avoid any further problem.
If you forget to take the dose and it is almost time to take the next dose, skip the missed dose and take the next dose on time. Otherwise, take it when you remember and follow your normal dosing schedule. Always keep in mind that taking double dose will only cause side effects. Hence, avoid taking two doses at the same time to compensate the missed dose. If you have any doubt regarding the missed dose, please talk to your doctor.
Side effects of the drug:
Tell your doctor if you develop any of the following while taking lopinavir/Ritonavir drug:
Stevens Johnson syndrome
Toxic epidermal necrolysis
Common drug interactions:
While taking Lopinavir/Ritonavir drug, you must not take medications that cause a reaction with alcohol such as metronidazole and disulfiram. Some other drugs that can affect the way Lopimune works are as follows:
Things to remember:
Be careful while driving or operating machinery during the treatment. The combination drug does not cause any problem, but like many medications, it can cause sleepiness or dizziness in some people.