In the U.S. -- Epivir Epivir-HBV In Canada -- 3TC Heptovir Antiviral, systemic Description
Lamivudine (la-MI-vyoo-deen) is used in the treatment of the infection caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or hepatitis B virus. HIV is the virus that causes acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). Lamivudine is taken together with zidovudine (AZT) or other medications used to treat HIV.
Lamivudine will not cure or prevent HIV infection or AIDS; however, it helps keep HIV from reproducing and appears to slow down the destruction of the immune system. This may help delay the development of problems usually related to AIDS or HIV disease. Lamivudine will not keep you from spreading HIV to other people. People who receive this medicine may continue to have other problems usually related to AIDS or HIV disease. Lamivudine is not a cure for the hepatitis B virus; the long-term effects of the drug on the infection and the liver are unknown at this time.
Lamivudine is available only with your doctor's prescription, in the following dosage forms:
Oral Oral solution (U.S. and Canada) Tablets (U.S. and Canada) Before Using This Medicine
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For lamivudine, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to lamivudine. Also tell your health care professional if you are allergic to any other substances, such as foods, preservatives, or dyes.
Lamivudine crosses the placenta. Studies in animals have shown that lamivudine causes birth defects when given in very high doses. Before taking this medicine, make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or if you may become pregnant. Ask your doctor to register you with the Pregnancy Registry, to monitor the effect of treatment on you and your baby.
Lamivudine passes into the …