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atazanavir (oral) (cont.)

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking atazanavir (Reyataz)?

You should not use atazanavir if you are allergic to it.

To make sure you can safely take atazanavir, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:

  • liver disease, including hepatitis B or C;
  • kidney disease (or if you are on dialysis);
  • diabetes;
  • a bleeding disorder such as hemophilia;
  • high cholesterol or triglycerides;
  • a heart rhythm disorder, a heart condition called "AV block"; or
  • if you have ever used a protease inhibitor in the past.

FDA pregnancy category B. This medication is not expected to be harmful to an unborn baby, but HIV can be passed to your baby if you are not properly treated during pregnancy. Take all of your HIV medicines as directed to control your infection. Atazanavir must be given together with ritonavir during pregnancy and for a short time after childbirth. Follow your doctor's dosing instructions very carefully.

Atazanavir can make birth control pills, patches, injections, or vaginal rings less effective. Ask your doctor about using a non hormone method of birth control (such as a condom, diaphragm, spermicide) to prevent pregnancy while taking atazanavir.

Women with HIV or AIDS should not breast-feed a baby. Even if your baby is born without HIV, the virus may be passed to the baby in your breast milk.

Do not give this medication to a child younger than 6 years old. Do not give atazanavir alone (without ritonavir) to a child younger than 13 years old, or to a child who weighs less than 88 pounds.

How should I take atazanavir (Reyataz)?

Take exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label. Atazanavir is used together with another medicine called ritonavir (Norvir, Kaletra) or tenofovir (Viread).

This medication comes with patient instructions for safe and effective use. Follow these directions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

Atazanavir should be taken once daily with food. Swallow the capsule whole.

Use atazanavir regularly to get the most benefit. Get your prescription refilled before you run out of medicine completely.

To be sure this medicine is helping your condition and is not causing harmful effects, your blood will need to be tested often. Your liver function may also need to be tested. Visit your doctor regularly.

HIV/AIDS is usually treated with a combination of drugs. Use all medications as directed by your doctor. Read the medication guide or patient instructions provided with each medication. Do not change your doses or medication schedule without your doctor's advice. Every person with HIV or AIDS should remain under the care of a doctor.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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