Also available as:
Lamivudine, Heptovir, LamivirHBV, Lamivir
$62 – $375
What is 3TC (Lamivudine, Epivir)?
Also called Epivir, 3TC is categorized as an antiretroviral medicine used in treating the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). This drug is taken with other HIV medications, such as zidovudine and abacavir. It comes in the form of a tablet and oral solution, making it easy to consume for adults and children. The brand name of 3TC is Lamivudine. It is also available for purchase, with other brand names – Heptovir, Lamivir, Lamivir HBV.
How does 3TC work?
3TC is classified under the group of drugs called nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTIs). It works by reducing the number of HIV in infected individuals. It blocks the functions of the virus, thus reversing the activity of the reverse transcriptase. The reverse transcriptase is a significant enzyme that HIV uses to multiply in the body. As an NRTI, 3TC is capable of boosting the body’s immune system, giving it leverage to fight off infections.
The dosage for 3TC is based on different factors:
- Pre-existing medical conditions
- Other medications taken
- The body’s response to the treatment
- Weight (3 months old and less than 25 kg for children)
Adults & Children (weighing at least 25 kg)
- 300 mg daily
- 150 mg (twice daily)
Pediatric Patients (weighing at least 20 kg but less than 25 kg)
- 225 mg daily
Pediatric patients (weighing at least 14 but less than 20 kg)
- 150 mg daily
How to take it?
Lamivudine can be consumed once or twice daily – orally. It is ingested with or without meals.
In taking the drug, it must be followed according to the same schedule you’re taking every day. Observing the prescription provided by the physician must be done thoroughly. Doing so will make the treatment a successful one. In cases where you mistakenly skipped one dose, taking it urgently is a must. However, if it’s time for the next dose, do not take the skipped dose. This is to avoid taking two doses at one time. Take note that without the approval of your healthcare professional, you cannot adjust nor stop the medication.
Ensure to follow all the instructions detailed by the healthcare professional. The drug has also a corresponding leaflet that you can use in case you need more information and details about the medication.
Lamivudine side effects
Consider the following side effects categorized from their severity. Note that side effects often go away after a few days of your first dose. However, should these side effects persist, call your doctor at once.
Mild Side Effects
- Tiredness, Dizziness
- Nasal congestion
Severe Side Effects
- Abdominal pain
- Joint pain
- Difficulty swallowing or breathing
- Blisters or peeling skin
- Excessive tiredness or weakness
- Erratic heartbeat
- Tingling in the arms or legs
- Unusual bleeding or bruising
- Light-coloured bowel movements
- Yellowing of the skin or eyes
- Vomiting or nausea (in children)
Store the medication in a tightly-sealed container. Avoid placing the medicine from direct sunlight. Lamivudine must be secured in its original container or package. In cases where the medicine has reached its expiry date, dispose of it immediately.