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Abacavir Brand And Generic Names

Warning! The Abacavir medicine can cause a life-threatening allergic reaction. In case you develop at least one symptom from 2 or more groups, you need to contact your doctor right away:
  • G.1 – Fever;
  • G.2 – Rash;
  • G.3 – Vomiting, nausea, stomach pain, diarrhea;
  • G.4 – Extreme tiredness, a general ill feeling, achiness;
  • G.5 – Cough, shortness of breath, sore throat.
The Abacavir medication can also cause the condition known as lactic acidosis, which may be life-threatening, and cause serious damages to your liver.

What is Abacavir?

The Abacavir medication is used to treat the HIV infection (human immunodeficiency virus infection) that causes the AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome). It is usually prescribed along with other medicines, being part of a complex program.
This medicine belongs to a class of drugs called antiviral medications and it works by reducing the amount of HIV in your blood. It does so by preventing the HIV cells from multiplying.
The Abacavir medicine doesn’t cure your HIV condition, but it minimizes your odds of developing AIDS and other HIV-related diseases (for instance, cancer or serious infections). In addition, making some changes in your lifestyle, practicing safer sex, while taking this medicine, can reduce the possibility of spreading and transmitting the HIV virus to other individuals.
For more information about the Abacavir medication, consult with your doctor or ask your pharmacist. This medicine can also be utilized for other purposes and in case of other conditions and illnesses than the ones mentioned above.

Before taking Abacavir

Before taking this medicine, it is recommendable to inform your health care provider about any of the below mentioned:
  • If you are allergic to this medication or to other drugs, which can be or can be not related to Abacavir;
  • In case you have other prescriptions or you are taking other medicines at the present moment, including vitamins, herbal products, dietary supplements and others;
  • In the event you have liver disease or you have a history of liver disease;
  • In case you have high blood pressure (hypertension);
  • In the event you have a heart disease;
  • If you have a risk factor for developing a heart disease like diabetes, smoking, high cholesterol and others;
  • In case you have used one of the following HIV drugs before that: didanosine, emtricitabine, lamivudine, stavudine, tenofovir, zalcitabine, zidovudine (for more accurate information, consult with your physician);
  • In the event you are pregnant, you have serious intentions of becoming pregnant during the Abacavir treatment or in a short while after it, or if you are already a breastfeeding mother.

How should Abacavir be taken and stored?

You must take this medicine exactly as it was prescribed to you by your health care provider. Don’t make changes to your doses on your own, neither increase nor lower them. In case you think you may need an adjustment to the amount of your doses or to your schedule, you need to consult with your doctor right away, prior to making any changes. If it happened so you don’t remember the indications and instructions your physician gave you concerning the use of this medicine, you can read the prescription label or you can call your doctor and ask for a consultation.
The Abacavir medication comes as a tablet and as a liquid solution. Both of them should be taken by mouth. You need to take them once or twice a day, advisable at around the same times every day during your treatment. You can take it with food or without it.
In case of the tablet, you need to take it with a full glass of water. If you take the liquid solution, you need to measure it with a medicine spoon or cup. In case you don’t have a special dose-measuring tool, you need to ask the pharmacist for one.
Remember! This medicine comes with a Warning Card and a Medication Guide, because it can cause a life-threatening allergic reaction. You must have these cards with you all the time.
The Abacavir medication is part of a complex program to treat the HIV infection. You must take all the drugs prescribed to you by your doctor and follow the instructions he or she gives you. You will need to test your blood with regularity, and it is advisable not to miss any of your physician’s appointments.
This drug is not a cure for your condition; it only helps you control it. Therefore, you must not stop taking it even if you feel better. You must take this medication during your entire treatment, and if you want to make some changes, talk to your doctor prior to doing so. If you suddenly stop the treatment, your condition may get worse and also you may experience an allergic reaction when you decide to start the treatment again.
Regarding the storing of this medicine, you need to keep it out of range of children. Store it away from moisture, direct light and excessive heat, at the room temperature. It is recommendable to keep it in the same container it came, which needs to be tightly closed. Don’t store it in your refrigerator or in the bathroom.

What should I do if I missed a dose?

In case you missed a dose, you must take it as soon as you remember about it. In case it is almost or already time for you to have the next dose of your treatment schedule, it will be better to just skip the forgotten dose and take only the necessary one. In no circumstances take two doses at once in order to fulfill the missed one; of you do so, you will probably suffer from an overdose.
Make sure you have refilled your prescription before you run out of your medicine. It is crucial not to interrupt your Abacavir treatment once you have started it. If you missed several doses of the Abacavir medication, you need to contact your physician prior to start taking it again.

What should I do in case of an overdose?

In the event you just have taken an overdose, you must call the emergency room right away. You can also get in touch with your health care provider and inform him or her on your condition.

Side effects of Abacavir

The Abacavir medication can cause both serious and common side effects. You need to contact your doctor or call the emergency room in case you are experiencing any of the following:
  • Depression;
  • Severe headache;
  • Insomnia (difficulty staying asleep and also falling asleep);
  • Anxiety;
  • Hives and itching;
  • Peeling and/or blistering skin;
  • Chills;
  • Trouble swallowing;
  • Difficulty breathing;
  • Signs of an infection;
  • Pain in your stomach, especially in the upper part of it, which is spreading to the back;
  • Loss of your appetite;
  • Urine of a dark color;
  • Jaundice, which is yellowing of the eyes and your skin;
  • Tremors in your hands;
  • Irritability;
  • Diarrhea;
  • Changes in your menstruation;
  • Decreased sex drive, which comes with impotence and inability to have an orgasm;
  • Weird dreams.
This list of side effects is not a complete one. There are other Abacavir side effects which may occur during the treatment. You need to contact your doctor or call the emergency room in case you are experiencing any of them. And remember, this medication can cause a fatal allergic reaction.
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