AIDS Home > Kaletra Side Effects
Abdominal pain, nausea, and diarrhea are some of the commonly reported side effects of Kaletra. However, adverse reactions could be caused by this or other HIV medications, since Kaletra is used as part of an HIV "cocktail." While most side effects with this drug are mild, certain ones may require medical attention, such as jaundice, changes in body fat distribution, or depression.
As with any medicine, side effects are possible with Kaletra® (lopinavir and ritonavir); however, not everyone who takes the drug will have problems. In fact, most people tolerate it quite well. If side effects do occur, in most cases, they are minor and either require no treatment or can be treated easily by you or your healthcare provider.
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible Kaletra side effects. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list with you.)
Clinical studies have not evaluated Kaletra alone for the treatment of HIV, since it is meant to be used along with other HIV medications. In fact, the available information on side effects involves studies that used Kaletra with two or three other HIV medications. Therefore, it is difficult to know whether these side effects are actually due to Kaletra or the other medications.
In these studies, the most common side effects seen when using Kaletra in combination with other HIV medications included:
- Diarrhea -- in up to 27 percent of people
- Nausea -- up to 16 percent
- Abdominal pain (stomach pain) -- up to 10 percent
- Weakness -- up to 9 percent
- Headaches -- up to 7 percent
- Vomiting -- up to 6 percent
- Indigestion or heartburn -- up to 5 percent
- Missed menstrual periods -- up to 4.5 percent
- Gas -- up to 4 percent.
Other common adverse reactions (occurring in up to 2 percent of people) included:
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
- Muscle pain
- Decreased sex drive
- Low testosterone in men
- High blood pressure (hypertension)
- Difficulty swallowing
- Unusual sensations, such as burning, tingling, or numbness.