Reyataz (atazanavir) is an antiviral medication in a group of HIV medicines called protease (PRO-tee-ayz) inhibitors. Reyataz prevents human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) cells from multiplying in your body.
Reyataz is used to treat HIV, which causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). It is not a cure for HIV or AIDS.
You should not use Reyataz if you are allergic to atazanavir. There are many other drugs that can cause serious or life-threatening medical problems if you take them together with Reyataz. The following drugs should not be used while you are taking Reyataz:
- alfuzosin (Uroxatral);
- cisapride (Propulsid);
- ergot medicine such as ergotamine (Ergomar, Cafergot, Migergot), dihydroergotamine (D.H.E. 45, Migranal), ergonovine (Ergotrate), or methylergonovine (Methergine);
- indinavir (Crixivan);
- irinotecan (Camptosar);
- lovastatin (Mevacor, Altoprev, Advicor) or simvastatin (Zocor, Simcor, Vytorin, Juvisync);
- oral midazolam (Versed)
- nevirapine (Viramune);
- pimozide (Orap);
- rifampin (Rifadin, Rimactane, Rifater);
- sildenafil (Revatio, for treating pulmonary arterial hypertension);
- St. John’s wort; or
- triazolam (Halcion).
To make sure you can safely take Reyataz, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:
- liver disease, including hepatitis B or C;
- kidney disease (or if you are on dialysis);
- a bleeding disorder such as hemophilia;
- high cholesterol or triglycerides;
- a heart rhythm disorder, a heart condition called “AV block”; or
- if you have ever used a protease inhibitor in the past.
FDA pregnancy category B. Reyataz is not expected to be harmful to an unborn baby, but HIV can be passed to your baby if you are not properly treated during pregnancy. Take all of your HIV medicines as directed to control your infection. Reyataz must be given together with ritonavir during pregnancy and for a short time after childbirth. Follow your doctor’s dosing instructions very carefully. Reyataz can make birth control pills, patches, injections, or vaginal rings less effective. Ask your doctor about using a non hormone method of birth control (such as a condom, diaphragm, spermicide) to prevent pregnancy while taking Reyataz.
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction to Reyataz: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Stop taking Reyataz and call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:
- severe dizziness, fast or pounding heartbeats, feeling like you might pass out;
- severe pain in your side or lower back, painful urination, blood in your urine;
- easy bruising or bleeding, signs of a new infection such as fever or chills, cough, or flu symptoms;
- jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes);
- increased sweating, tremors in your hands, anxiety, feeling irritable, sleep problems (insomnia);
- diarrhea, unexplained weight loss, menstrual changes, impotence, loss of interest in sex;
- swelling in your neck or throat (enlarged thyroid);
- muscle weakness, tired feeling, trouble speaking or swallowing, joint or muscle pain, feeling short of breath;
- weakness or prickly feeling in your fingers or toes, loss of bladder or bowel control;
- problems with walking, speech, swallowing, or eye movement;
- high blood sugar (increased thirst, increased urination, hunger, dry mouth, fruity breath odor, drowsiness, dry skin, blurred vision); or
- severe skin reaction — fever, sore throat, swelling in your face or tongue, burning in your eyes, skin pain, followed by a red or purple skin rash that spreads (especially in the face or upper body) and causes blistering and peeling.
Less serious Reyataz side effects may include:
- nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain;
- numbness or burning pain in your hands or feet;
- headache, dizziness, depressed mood;
- changes in the shape or location of body fat (especially in your arms, legs, face, neck, breasts, and waist).
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.