Font Size

Medications and Drugs

Brand Names: Tyzeka

Generic Name: telbivudine (Pronunciation: tel BIV yoo deen)

What is telbivudine (Tyzeka)?

Telbivudine is an antiviral medication. It works by preventing viral cells from multiplying in the body and infecting new liver cells.

Telbivudine is used to treat chronic hepatitis B in adults. This medicine will not cure hepatitis.

Telbivudine may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What are the possible side effects of telbivudine (Tyzeka)?

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

This medication may cause lactic acidosis (a build-up of lactic acid in the body, which can be fatal). Lactic acidosis can start slowly and get worse over time. Get emergency medical help if you have even mild symptoms of lactic acidosis, such as:

  • muscle pain or weakness;
  • numb or cold feeling in your arms and legs;
  • trouble breathing;
  • feeling dizzy, light-headed, tired, or very weak;
  • stomach pain, nausea with vomiting; or
  • fast or uneven heart rate.

Call your doctor at once if you have any other serious side effects, such as:

  • muscle tenderness, or weakness (may occur several weeks or months after you start taking telbivudine);
  • fever or flu symptoms and dark colored urine;
  • burning, pain or tingly feeling in your arms or legs; or
  • liver symptoms - nausea, upper stomach pain, itching, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).

Less serious side effects may include:

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What is the most important information I should know about telbivudine (Tyzeka)?

Some people develop lactic acidosis while taking telbivudine. Early symptoms may get worse over time and this condition can be fatal. Get emergency medical help if you have even mild symptoms such as: muscle pain or weakness, numb or cold feeling in your arms and legs, trouble breathing, stomach pain, nausea with vomiting, fast or uneven heart rate, dizziness, or feeling very weak or tired.

Your liver symptoms may become severe after you stop taking telbivudine, even months after stopping. Your doctor may want to check your liver function for several months after you stop taking telbivudine. Visit your doctor regularly.

Taking this medication will not prevent you from passing hepatitis B to other people. Avoid having unprotected sex or sharing razors or toothbrushes. Talk with your doctor about safe ways to prevent transmission during sex. Sharing drug or medicine needles is never safe, even for a healthy person.

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.

Pill Identifier Tool

Need help identifying pills and medications?
Use the pill finder tool on RxList.

Medical Dictionary