AIDS Home > Reyataz Warnings and Precautions
Before starting treatment with Reyataz, warnings and precautions for the drug should be reviewed. It's important to let your healthcare provider know if you have liver disease, diabetes, or any allergies before starting treatment. Reyataz warnings and precautions also apply to people who are allergic to any components of the medication or who are already taking certain medicines.
You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking Reyataz® (atazanavir sulfate) if you have:
- An irregular heart rhythm (arrhythmia)
- Liver disease, such as liver failure, cirrhosis, or hepatitis
- A history of kidney stones
- Any allergies, including allergies to food, dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you are:
- Pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant
You should also be sure to tell your healthcare provider about all other medicines you are taking, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
Warnings and precautions to be aware of prior to taking Reyataz include the following:
- The medication can cause an irregular heart rhythm (arrhythmia). Make sure your healthcare provider knows if you already have an arrhythmia, as Reyataz could make it worse.
- Reyataz can increase the level of bilirubin in your blood (this is known medically as hyperbilirubinemia). Let your healthcare provider know if you develop yellow eyes or yellow skin (jaundice), as this may be a sign of hyperbilirubinemia.
- The medication frequently causes skin rashes. Most often, these rashes are harmless, although sometimes they can be quite dangerous. Let your healthcare provider know if you develop a rash while taking Reyataz.
- The liver helps to remove Reyataz from the blood. Therefore, if you have liver disease, Reyataz may make it worse. Make sure to tell your healthcare provider if you already have liver disease or liver damage.
- Reyataz can cause high blood sugar (hyperglycemia). This can cause problems for people with diabetes, or it can even cause diabetes in individuals who are predisposed to the condition.
- There have been reports of bleeding possibly due to protease inhibitors (such as Reyataz) in people with hemophilia. Be sure your healthcare provider knows if you have this condition.
- There have been reports of kidney stones possibly caused by Reyataz. Make sure to let your healthcare provider know if you have had kidney stones in the past before taking the drug.
- The medication can change the distribution of fat on your body. You may gain fat in areas that are not typical for you, such as in the abdomen or at the back of the neck (a "buffalo hump"), and may lose weight in other areas.
- Reyataz is not a cure for HIV or AIDS. If you have HIV or AIDS, you should always use safer sex practices, whether or not you are taking medications.
- As with all HIV medications, it is important that you take Reyataz exactly as prescribed. Missing doses may increase the chance of the virus becoming resistant to HIV medications.
- Reyataz can interact with a number of different medications (see Reyataz Drug Interactions).
- Reyataz is considered a pregnancy Category B medication. This means that it is probably safe for use during pregnancy, although the full risks are not known (see Reyataz and Pregnancy).
- It is not known if Reyataz passes through breast milk. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start, discuss this with your healthcare provider prior to taking the drug (see Reyataz and Breastfeeding). It is important to understand that the HIV virus can be transmitted through breast milk and that breastfeeding is usually not recommended in women with HIV or AIDS.