Lipodystrophy is a common side effect of HIV medications, and it is often treated with the drug Egrifta. This product is injected just beneath the surface of the skin once a day. It works by increasing the release of growth hormone, which helps reduce stomach fat. Most people have no problems with this medicine. The most common side effect is a reaction at the injection site.
What Is Egrifta?Egrifta™ (tesamorelin acetate) is a prescription medication approved to reduce excess abdominal (stomach) fat in people with HIV who also have lipodystrophy. Lipodystrophy is a common side effect of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) medications; it involves excessive fat accumulation around the stomach. Egrifta is taken by a subcutaneous injection (an injection just below the skin).
How Does Egrifta Work?Egrifta increases the release of growth hormone in the body. Growth hormone is able to break down fatty tissue and build up organ tissues. The effects of growth hormone are broad, but its effect on fat breakdown is believed to be responsible for the reduction of stomach fat.
When and How to Take ItSome general considerations to keep in mind during treatment with Egrifta include the following:
- This medication is given as an injection just under the skin once a day.
- The injections are usually given in the fatty layer on the abdomen (the "stomach" area). Do not inject Egrifta into a muscle.
- Make sure your healthcare provider shows you exactly how to inject this medication.
- For this drug to work properly, it must be taken as prescribed.