AIDS Home > Important Information on Combivir

Effects of Combivir

Studies have shown that adding lamivudine to zidovudine reduces the risk of HIV worsening or death, compared to using just zidovudine alone. In one study, 19.6 percent of people taking just zidovudine experienced worsening of HIV or died, compared to only 9.6 percent of people taking both lamivudine and zidovudine.
 

When and How to Take Combivir

General considerations for when and how to take Combivir include the following:
 
  • The medication comes in tablet form. It is taken by mouth twice a day.
     
  • You can take it with or without food. If the medicine bothers your stomach, try taking it with food.
     
  • Try to take Combivir at the same times each day to maintain an even level in your blood.
     
  • For the medication to work properly, it must be taken as prescribed. It is important that you closely follow your healthcare provider's instructions on taking Combivir. Missing doses can increase the chance of the virus developing resistance to Combivir, thereby making it less effective.
     

Dosing Information

There is only one standard dose of Combivir, regardless of your age or weight. However, the medication is not usually recommended for people with kidney disease or liver disease, since the dosages of the individual components cannot be adjusted separately. For these people, it is usually recommended that the two medications in Combivir be taken separately so that the appropriate dosages can be achieved.
 
As always, do not adjust your dose unless your healthcare provider specifically instructs you to do so.
 
(Click Combivir Dosage for more information.)
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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