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Epzicom (Kivexa, Abacavir/Lamivudine) Uses and Dosage

What is Epzicom (Kivexa)?

Used to treat HIV, Epzicom is one of the fixed-dosed combinations of ARV medications available today. It is produced to block the virus from multiplying and replicate in the body. Epzicom is a combination of Abacavir and Lamivudine, both of which are antiretroviral medicines.

This prescription drug has the capability to control HIV infection. Aside from that major medical function, it reduces the amount of virus in the body, giving the immune system a big chance to recover and work properly. Epzicom also serves as an obstacle in preventing someone to contract other health complications, such as cancer. It is sold under the brand-name – Kivexa. It has also a generic counterpart, which is sold cheaper and affordable to many patients.

How does Epzicom work?

Two of the main ingredients of Epzicom, being Abacavir and Lamivudine, both belong to a group of ARV drugs called nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors or NRTIs. These types of drugs work by controlling and managing HIV infection by inhibiting it from replicating. NRTIs like Kivexa is very much capable of slowing down the development of HIV before it triggers other health dilemmas.

Additionally, NRTIs block a certain enzyme that HIV needs in order to replicate. This enzyme is called reverse transcriptase. While also performing such action, the medication helps the immune system in fighting the infection and prevents the virus from causing more problems.

Dosage

The right dosage of Epzicom depends on several factors. These are as follows:

  • Age of the patient
  • Pre-existing medical conditions, such as liver disease, hepatitis B, hepatitis C, kidney disease, heart problems, diabetes, and high cholesterol
  • Allergy to Kivexa or any ingredients of the drug – prevent usage of this medication if a patient has known hypersensitivity towards Epzicom
  • Weight of the patient

Consider the following information with regards to the right dosage that may be recommended to you by the healthcare professional.

Dosage for HIV

Adult Dose for HIV Infection:

  • Take one tablet orally (daily intake)
  • Consume in combination with other ARV drugs

Adult Dose for Nonoccupational Exposure:

  • Take one tablet orally (daily intake)
  • 28 days of therapy duration

Adult Dose for Occupational Exposure:

  • Take one tablet orally (daily intake)
  • 28 days of therapy duration

Pediatric Dose for HIV Infection:

  • Children who are at least 25 kg: 1 tablet orally once a day

Epzicom can be taken with or without food. The dosage is prescribed according to the severity of your condition, so ensure you follow the instructions provided by your doctor. For further assistance, a leaflet is provided with the drug. For missed doses, take the dose for the day as soon as you can. Remember not to take two doses in one day. Additionally, frequent visitation to the doctor will help the patient more in his/her recovery process.

Consider the following list of precautionary measures that can help you in preventing HIV infection:

  • One of the major causes of HIV infection is unprotected sex. In line with that fact, consider using a protective barrier such as condoms during sexual activity. This alone can reduce your risk for HIV infection.
  • Other than unprotected sex, sharing personal items can increase your risk of getting the infection. Personal items, such as toothbrushes, razors, or anything that the virus can cling to, must not be used together with another person.
  • Engaging in alcohol and drug abuse may lead to unprotected sex or even in drug injections. Prevent yourself from using shared needles and syringes that may be contaminated with HIV.
  • Getting tested is a must. In knowing your status, you are helping in controlling the viral spread. Several HIV testing sites and hubs should be available to serve you for free.

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