RETROVIR (ZIDOVUDINE) HAS BEEN ASSOCIATED WITH HEMATOLOGIC
TOXICITY INCLUDING NEUTROPENIA AND SEVERE ANEMIA PARTICULARLY
IN PATIENTS WITH ADVANCED HUMAN IMMUNODEFICIENCY VIRUS (HIV)
DISEASE. PROLONGED USE OF RETROVIR HAS BEEN
ASSOCIATED WITH SYMPTOMATIC MYOPATHY.
LACTIC ACIDOSIS AND SEVERE HEPATOMEGALY WITH STEATOSIS,
INCLUDING FATAL CASES, HAVE BEEN REPORTED WITH THE USE OF
NUCLEOSIDE ANALOGUES ALONE OR IN COMBINATION, INCLUDING
RETROVIR AND OTHER ANTIRETROVIRALS.
RETROVIR is the brand name for zidovudine (formerly called azidothymidine [AZT]), a
pyrimidine nucleoside analogue active against HIV.
Zidovudine is a synthetic nucleoside analogue. Intracellularly,
zidovudine is phosphorylated to its active 5′-triphosphate metabolite, zidovudine triphosphate
(ZDV-TP). The principal mode of action of ZDV-TP is inhibition of RT via DNA chain
termination after incorporation of the nucleotide analogue. ZDV-TP is a weak inhibitor of the
cellular DNA polymerases α and γ and has been reported to be incorporated into the DNA of
cells in culture.
Retrovir (Zidovudine) is an antiviral used to manage human immunodeficiency virus infection (HIV), which causes the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). It is also used to prevent the transmission of HIV to the fetus during pregnancy. While taking Retrovir (Zidovudine) you should follow your physicians instructions with respect to high-risk activities such as unprotected sex and the sharing of needles. Retrovir (Zidovudine) is not a cure for HIV or AIDS, and it is still possible to transmit the virus to others during therapy with this medication.
While taking Retrovir (Zidovudine), the possible side effects may include headache, nausea, difficulty sleeping, or muscle pain. If these side effects continue or are bothersome, check with your physician. If you experience sore throat; chills, fever; unusual bleeding or bruising; or unusual tiredness or weakness, check with your physician as soon as possible. If you experience yellowing of the eyes or skin; dark urine; or severe stomach or back pain with nausea and vomiting, you need to contact your physician immediately. Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome.