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Weakness, nausea, and high cholesterol are some of the most commonly reported Norvir side effects. Most people actually tolerate the drug well, and if side effects occur, they are usually mild and easily treated. There are, however, some less common but potentially serious side effects of Norvir that should be reported to a healthcare provider immediately, including anemia, high blood sugar, and unexplained bleeding.

Norvir Side Effects: An Introduction

As with any medicine, side effects are possible with Norvir® (ritonavir); however, not everyone who takes the drug will experience side effects. 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 easily be treated by you or your healthcare provider.
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible side effects with Norvir. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list of Norvir side effects with you.)

Common Norvir Side Effects

Norvir has been studied thoroughly in clinical trials. In these studies, the side effects that occur in a group of people taking the drug are documented and are then compared to side effects that occur in another group of people not taking the medicine. This way, it is possible to see what side effects occur, how often they appear, and how they compare to the group not taking the medicine.
In these studies, the most common Norvir side effects included:
  • High cholesterol -- in up to 44.8 percent of people
  • High triglycerides -- up to 33.6 percent
  • Nausea -- up to 29.8 percent
  • Diarrhea -- up to 23.3 percent
  • Vomiting -- up to 17.4 percent
  • Weakness -- up to 15.3 percent
  • Changes in taste -- up to 11.1 percent
  • Abdominal pain (stomach pain) -- up to 8.3 percent
  • Loss of appetite -- up to 7.8 percent
  • Burning, tingling, numbness, or other unusual sensations around the mouth -- up to 6.7 percent
  • Headaches -- up to 6.5 percent.
Other common Norvir side effects (occurring in 1 to 6 percent of people) included:
  • Unusual sensations (like burning, tingling, or numbness) in the feet or hands
  • Fever
  • A general ill feeling (malaise)
  • Pain
  • Fainting
  • Flushing
  • Indigestion or heartburn
  • Gas
  • Sore throat
  • Weight loss
  • Dizziness
  • Insomnia
  • Drowsiness
  • Sweating.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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