AIDS Home > Combivir Uses

Combivir uses are primarily concerned with the treatment of HIV and AIDS. The drug can also be used in an off-label fashion to prevent infection in someone who has been exposed to the virus. Combivir works by inhibiting the process by which the HIV virus multiplies. It is prescribed only for adults and children who weigh more than 66 pounds.

Combivir Uses: An Overview

Combivir® (lamivudine/zidovudine) is a prescription HIV and AIDS medication. It contains two different medications, both of which belong to a group of medications known as nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTIs).
Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) was first reported in the United States in 1981 and has since become a major worldwide epidemic. AIDS is caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Initially, HIV usually causes no obvious symptoms (see HIV Symptoms). However, by killing or damaging cells of the body's immune system, the virus will eventually begin to progressively destroy the body's ability to fight infections and certain cancers (see AIDS Symptoms).
HIV is commonly spread through sexual contact with an infected partner. HIV transmission also happens through contact with infected blood, which frequently occurs among IV drug users (who may share needles or syringes contaminated with blood from someone infected with the virus). Women with HIV can transmit the virus to their babies during pregnancy, birth, or breastfeeding.
Even though Combivir contains two different HIV medications, it is not intended to be used alone. Instead, it is used as part of an HIV "cocktail." These cocktails consist of three or four different HIV medications (technically known as highly active antiretroviral therapy or HAART). Using combinations of medications helps to prevent the virus from becoming resistant to one or more of the drugs.
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Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
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