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Kaletra (lopinavir/ritonavir) is a combination medication for the treatment and prevention of HIV/AIDS.
The drug has antiviral activity. The main substances of the drug belong to the group of inhibitors of HIV-1 and HIV-2 protease of the viral organization of a deficiency of the human immune system. The substance is able to withstand the process of reproduction of pathogen proteins. This does not give the cell a chance to mature and infect the body.
This drug is used to treat HIV-infected patients, in combination with other antiretroviral drugs.
Kaletra is not used in the following cases:
- hypersensitivity to ritonavir/lopinavir, other components of the drug;
- high amount of triglyceride in the blood;
- low amount of potassium in the blood;
- a low supply of oxygen rich blood to the heart;
- a disease of the heart muscle;
- complete heart block;
- second degree atrioventricular heart block;
- abnormal EKG with QT changes from birth;
- high amount of bilirubin in the blood;
- a mother who is producing milk and breastfeeding;
- hardening of the liver;
- torsades de pointes;
- high cholesterol and high triglycerides;
- low amount of magnesium in the blood;
- a type of abnormal heart rhythm;
- liver problems;
- acute inflammation of the pancreas;
- structural disorder of heart;
- prolonged QT interval on EKG;
- abnormal heart rhythm;
- an abnormal but slight slowing of the heart called first degree atrioventricular block.
Dosage and administration
Kaletra is taken orally. You can take the prescribed dose regardless of meals. Do not break, do not chew tablets – swallow them whole.
Only a doctor can determine the dose of the drug for your condition.
You need to take the prescribed dose after approximately an equal period of time.
The treatment lasts a lifetime. It is important not to miss taking pills since the human immunodeficiency virus has an increased ability to develop resistance.
Therapy with Kaletra can cause adverse reactions. These include:
- rash, bullous rash, itching, allergic urticaria, anaphylactic shock;
- benign and malignant neoplasms;
- anemia, leukopenia, lymphadenopathy, neutropenia;
- hypogonadism (in men), Cushing’s syndrome, hypothyroidism;
- flu-like syndrome, otitis media, pharyngitis, bronchitis, rhinitis, sinusitis, furunculosis, sialadenitis, gastroenteritis, bacterial or viral infection, bronchopneumonia;
- cellulitis, folliculitis;
- violations of the organs of vision, hearing;
- hypovitaminosis, dehydration, edema, increased appetite, lactic acidosis, obesity, anorexia, diabetes mellitus, hyperglycemia, hypocholesterolemia, lipomatosis;
- sleep disturbance, mood changes, anxious dreams, agitation, anxiety, apathy, confusion, depression, dyskinesia, decreased libido, nervousness, impaired thinking;
- nephrolithiasis, nephritis, hyperuricemia, hematuria, renal failure;
- ejaculation disorders, amenorrhea, gynecomastia, erectile dysfunction, menorrhagia;
- palpitations, myocardial infarction, atrial flutter, arterial hypertension, thrombophlebitis, orthostatic hypotension, vasculitis, varicose veins, deep vein thrombosis, vasodilation, angina pectoris;
- pulmonary edema, shortness of breath, cough, asthma;
- diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, dyspepsia, flatulence, constipation, gastroesophageal reflux, dry mouth, dysphagia, enterocolitis, colitis, belching, esophagitis, fecal incontinence, gastritis, enteritis, gastroenteritis, hemorrhagic enteritis, mucous rheumatoid arthritis , pancreatitis, stomatitis, periodontitis, abdominal discomfort, pain in the lower abdomen, duodenitis, stomach and intestinal ulcers, rectal bleeding, gastrointestinal bleeding, rarely – hemorrhoids;
- headache, including migraine, paresthesia, facial paralysis, convulsions, intracranial hypertension, neuropathy;
- cholecystitis, hepatitis, hepatomegaly, fatty liver, soreness of the liver, jaundice, cholangitis;
- rash, acne, eczema, dermatitis, allergic dermatitis;
- arthralgia, osteoarthritis, myalgia, pain in the limbs;
Pregnancy and breastfeeding
During pregnancy, the potential benefits of taking lopinavir/ritonavir should be analyzed regarding the possible risk to the mother and baby. Women should stop breastfeeding.
Cases of overdose have not been reported so far. In case of overdose, treatment should be symptomatic. There is no specific antidote.
The drug may interact with other drugs or supplements that you take. These interactions can change the amount of each drug in your bloodstream and can cause under- or overdose.
Avoid taking Kaletra with other antiretroviral drugs, drugs for treating tuberculosis, for erectile dysfunction (such as Viagra), for heart rhythm (against arrhythmia), and also for migraine. The drug may also interact with certain antihistamines (allergy medications), sedatives, antifungals, and medications to lower cholesterol, methadone, buprenorphine. Nelfinavir, contraceptives, St. John’s wort, lamotrigine.
Make sure your doctor knows about ALL drugs and supplements you are taking.
Lopinavir undergoes the main metabolism in the liver, therefore, in the presence of pathologies in this organ (mild, moderate), the patient’s condition should be closely monitored. If HIV is accompanied by hepatitis B or C, there is a high probability of an increase in aminotransferases.
Before you buy Kaletra and begin therapy, you should know that this drug does not completely eliminate HIV. For this reason, during therapy, it is necessary to observe all necessary precautions.
Treatment can negatively affect the ability to concentrate since it may cause dizziness, drowsiness, headache. For this reason, it is recommended that you be as careful as possible when driving, operating heavy machinery, or performing actions that require maximum attention.
The drug should be stored out of the reach of children and pets, at room temperature. Do not take the expired pills.