Generic Name: atazanavir, Oral capsule

Generic Name:

atazanavir, Oral capsule

Reyataz

All Brands

  • Reyataz
SECTION 1 of 5

Highlights for atazanavir

Oral capsule
1

Reyataz is an oral medication used in combination with other drugs to treat human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection.

2

Reyataz is taken once per day. It’s always taken with ritonavir (Norvir) to help it work. The usual adult dose ranges from 300 mg to 400 mg per day.

3

If you have another disease or have been treated for HIV infection with other drugs, your doctor may need to adjust your dose of Reyataz.

4

Many drugs interact with Reyataz. Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all the drugs you‘re currently taking, including both prescription and over-the-counter drugs.

5

Most side effects are mild. Many people develop a rash within the first few weeks of taking this drug. See a doctor right away if the rash is severe (with blistering or peeling skin) or develops suddenly.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

May change your heartbeat

Reyataz can make your heart beat more slowly or in a different pattern. This side effect can be worse if you take it with certain other drugs. If you already have heart disease or your heart beats irregularly, talk to your doctor before taking Reyataz.

May increase blood sugar level

Your blood sugar level could go up while you take this drug, so you may need to monitor your blood sugar level. If you have diabetes, the risk of this side effect is increased.

Hemophilia warning

If you have hemophilia, taking this drug could increase your risk of bleeding. Symptoms of excessive bleeding include a swelling on your skin that is filled with blood or blood that accumulates in a joint.

Drug Features

Reyataz is a prescription drug. It is available in these forms: oral capsule, oral powder.

Reyataz is used as part of a combination therapy. That means you might need to take it in combination with other drugs to treat your condition.

Why It's Used

Reyataz is used in combination with ritonavir (Norvir) and other antiretroviral drugs to treat human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection.

More Details

How It Works

Reyataz works by limiting the ability of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) to make copies of itself and spread in your body.

More Details

Why It's Used

Reyataz is used in combination with ritonavir (Norvir) and other antiretroviral drugs to treat human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. It doesn’t cure HIV infection, but it helps to control it. 

If you’ve been treated before for HIV infection, you may have developed some resistance to antiretroviral drugs. If you have resistance, your doctor will decide if Reyataz is the right drug for you.

Reyataz is approved to treat HIV infection in adults and children who are at least 3 months old and who weigh at least 22 pounds (10 kg).

How It Works

Reyataz works by limiting the ability of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) to make copies of itself and spread in your body.

Reyataz is a protease inhibitor. It blocks the action of the enzyme protease, which HIV needs to insert its genetic material into your cells.

SECTION 2 of 5

atazanavir Side Effects

Oral capsule

Most Common Side Effects

The most common side effects from Reyataz include:

  • nausea

  • rash

  • headache

  • abdominal pain

  • vomiting

  • increased blood sugar

  • insomnia

  • tingling or pain in fingers and toes

  • dizziness

  • muscle aches

  • changes in body fat, such as increased fat on the back of your neck

  • diarrhea

  • depression
  • fever

If these symptoms don’t go away or are bothersome, call your doctor.

Serious Side Effects

If you experience any of these serious side effects, call your doctor right away. If your symptoms are potentially life-threatening, or if you think you’re experiencing a medical emergency, call 9-1-1.

  • changes to your heartbeat. Symptoms include heartbeats that feel further apart and a feeling of tiredness. If you already have heart rhythm problems, you may be more likely to have this side effect.

  • excessive or spontaneous bleeding. If you have hemophilia, you’re at higher risk of bleeding while taking this drug. Symptoms of spontaneous bleeding include:

    • swelling on your skin that’s filled with blood
    • blood accumulating in your joints, which may cause pain
    • swelling and increased temperature in the joint, as well as decreased joint motion.
  • severe rash (with blistering or skin peeling) along with wheezing, fever, or breathing problems.

  • kidney stones. Symptoms include:

    • sudden pain in the front or side of your abdomen
    • difficulty urinating
    • nausea
    • fever
    • blood in your urine 
  • gallstone or gall bladder attack. Symptoms include:

    • sudden pain in your upper or middle upper abdomen for at least 30 minutes
    • fever
    • yellowing of your skin
    • clay-colored stools 
  • liver toxicity. Symptoms include:

    • stomach pain
    • nausea
    • tiredness
    • yellow skin or eyes
    • swelling of your stomach

    If you have hepatitis B or hepatitis C virus infection, you’re at greater risk of this side effect.

  • increased blood sugar levels. Symptoms include:

    • thirst
    • fatigue
    • weight loss
    • warm, dry skin

    If you have diabetes, you’re at higher risk of an increased blood sugar level. 

  • immune reconstitution syndrome. A recovering immune system may result in your body recognizing previous infections you’ve had. Past infections that may require you to seek and receive treatment include fungal infections, pneumonia, or tuberculosis. Your doctor may need to treat the old infection if this happens. Watch for returning symptoms of your past infections.

Pharmacist's Advice
Healthline Pharmacist Editorial Team

Reyataz does not cause drowsiness.

Many people develop a rash a few weeks after starting Reyataz. The rash is usually mild and disappears in a week or two.

If the rash is severe or sudden, or you also have breathing problems or a fever, see a doctor right away.

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs affect each person differently, we cannot guarantee that this information includes all possible side effects. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always discuss possible side effects with a healthcare provider who knows your medical history.
SECTION 3 of 5

atazanavir May Interact with Other Medications

Oral capsule

Reyataz can interact with other medications, herbs, or vitamins you might be taking. That’s why your doctor should manage all of your medications carefully. If you’re curious about how this drug might interact with something else you’re taking, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

Note: You can reduce your chances of drug interactions by having all of your prescriptions filled at the same pharmacy. That way, a pharmacist can check for possible drug interactions.

Medications That Might Interact with This Drug

Antacids and acid-reducing drugs
  • antacids with aluminum/magnesium
  • antacids with calcium
  • omeprazole (Prilosec, Zegerid)
  • ranitidine (Zantac)

Antibiotics and other drugs to treat infections
  • clarithromycin (Biaxin)
  • rifabutin (Mycobutin)
  • rifampin

Antidepressants and other mental health drugs
  • amitriptyline (Elavil)
  • desipramine 
  • nortriptyline (Norpramin)
  • trazodone (Desyrel)

Antifungal drugs
  • ketoconazole
  • itraconazole (Sporanox)
  • voriconazole (Vfend)

Antiretroviral (HIV) drugs

These include:

  • darunavir (Prezista)
  • didanosine (Videx)
  • Efavirenz (Sustiva)
  • fosamprenavir (Lexiva) 
  • Indinavir (Crixivan)
  • lopinavir/ritonavir (Kaletra)
  • nelfinavir (Viracept)
  • raltegravir (Isentress)
  • ritonavir (Norvir)
  • saquinavir (Invirase)
  • tenofovir (Viread)
  • zidovudine (Retrovir)

Asthma and other inhaled drugs
  • fluticasone (Flonase)
  • salmeterol (Serevent)

Blood thinner, or anticoagulant
  • warfarin (Coumadin)

Enlarged prostate (BPH) drug
  • alfuzosin (Uroxatral)

Chemotherapy (cancer) drug
  • irinotecan (Camptosar) 

Cholesterol-lowering drugs
  • atorvastatin (Lipitor)
  • lovastatin (Mevacor)
  • rosuvastatin (Crestor)
  • simvastatin (Zocor)

Epilepsy drugs
  • carbamazepine (Tegretol)
  • phenobarbital
  • phenytoin (Dilantin)

Erectile dysfunction drugs
  • sildenafil (Viagra)
  • tadalafil (Cialis)
  • vardenafil (Levitra)

GI motility drug (helps empty stomach)
  • cisapride (Propulsid)

Gout drug
  • colchicine (Colcrys) 

Heart drugs

These include calcium channel blockers and drugs for heart arrhythmias:

  • diltiazem (Cardizem, Tiazac)
  • felodipine
  • nicardipine (Cardene)
  • nifedipine
  • nisoldipine (Sular)
  • verapamil (Calan)

Hepatitis drugs
  • boceprevir (Victrelis) for hepatitis C
  • telaprevir (Incivek) for hepatitis C

Herbal drug
  • St. John’s wort

Migraine headache drugs
  • dihydroergotamine
  • ergotamine
  • ergonovine
  • methylergonovine

Oral contraceptives/hormones
  • ethinyl estradiol
  • norethindrone

Pain drugs

These include:

  • buffered aspirin (Bufferin)
  • buprenorphine

Post-transplant drugs (immunosuppressants)
  • cyclosporine (Gengraf, Neoral)
  • tacrolimus (Prograf)
  • sirolimus (Rapamune)

Sleeping medications
  • triazolam (Halcion)

Tourette syndrome medication
  • pimozide (Orap)

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs interact differently in each person, we cannot guarantee that this information includes all possible interactions. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always speak with your healthcare provider about possible interactions with all prescription drugs, vitamins, herbs and supplements, and over-the-counter drugs that you are taking.

People with phenylketonuria

The oral powder form of the drug contains phenylalanine, which can be harmful to you if you have phenylketonuria. The oral capsules do not contain phenylalanine and should be safe for you.

People with heart rhythm problems

Reyataz may worsen heart rhythm problems, such as slowed or changed heartbeat. Combining Reyataz with certain drugs can also lead to this effect. Talk to your doctor before taking this drug. See a doctor right away if you think you’re experiencing a heart rhythm problem. Call 9-1-1 if you feel that you are having a life-threatening emergency.

People with hemophilia

If you have hemophilia, Reyataz increases your risk for spontaneous bleeding. This includes bleeding under your skin and in joints.

People with diabetes

Reyataz may increase blood sugar levels. If you have diabetes, you’re at a higher risk of this side effect.

People with liver disease

If you have liver disease or hepatitis B virus or hepatitis C virus infection, this drug could worsen your infection. Your doctor may decide to give you a different drug, or they may monitor your liver function more closely while you take Reyataz.

People with kidney disease

If you have kidney disease and aren’t on hemodialysis, the standard dose of Reyataz is appropriate for you.  However, if you're on dialysis and are an HIV-treatment-experienced patient, Reyataz isn’t recommended for you. If you're on dialysis and treatment-naive, the recommended dose for you is Reyataz 300 mg in combination with ritonavir 100 mg once daily.

Pregnant women

Reyataz is a pregnancy category B drug. That means two things:

  1. Studies of the drug in pregnant animals have not shown risk to the fetus.
  2. There aren’t enough studies done in pregnant women to show the drug poses a risk to the fetus.

Your doctor may decide to give you Reyataz while you’re pregnant only if its benefits outweigh the possible risks. Talk to your doctor before taking this drug if you’re pregnant or plan to become pregnant. 

Women who are nursing

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, you should not breastfeed your infant if you have human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). There is a risk of passing HIV to your baby.

Additionally, it isn’t known if this drug passes through breast milk.

For Children

This drug is used to treat children as young as 3 months old. The drug is available as an oral powder that can be mixed with baby formula or food.

Be very careful to keep Reyataz powder packets away from children. The powder is flavored and a child might mistake it for a powdered drink mix.

When to call the doctor

Call your doctor if you think you’re experiencing:

  • fever
  • weakness
  • chills
  • night sweats
  • sore throat
  • joint pain

These symptoms may be a sign the drug isn’t working, and you may need a different treatment.

SECTION 4 of 5

How to Take atazanavir (Dosage)

Oral capsule

All possible dosages and forms may not be included here. Your dose, form, and how often you take it will depend on:

  • your age
  • the condition being treated
  • how severe your condition is
  • other medical conditions you have
  • how you react to the first dose

What Are You Taking This Medication For?

Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection

Brand: Reyataz

Form: Oral capsule
Strengths: 150 mg, 200 mg, 300 mg
Form: Oral powder
Strengths: 50 mg per packet
Adult Dosage (ages 18-64 years)

The dose is 300–400 mg taken once per day.

Child Dosage (ages 3 months-17 years)

The dose is based on body weight. The powder should not be given to children who weigh less than 22 pounds (10 kg) or more than 55 pounds (25 kg).

Child Dosage (ages 0-3 months)

Dosage has not been established for infants younger than 3 months.

Senior Dosage (ages 65 years and older)

There are no specific recommendations for senior dosing. Older adults may process drugs more slowly. A normal adult dose may cause levels of the drug to be higher than normal. If you’re a senior, you may need a lower dose or you may need a different schedule.

Special Considerations

Hepatitis B or hepatitis C virus infection: If you have hepatitis B or hepatitis C virus infection and have hepatic impairment, your doctor may adjust your dose. In addition, if you have hepatic impairment, you will not receive ritonavir along with your Reyataz therapy.

Kidney Disease: If you have kidney disease and aren’t on hemodialysis, the standard dose of Reyataz is appropriate for you. However, if you're on dialysis and are an HIV-treatment-experienced patient, Reyataz isn’t recommended for you. If you're on dialysis and treatment-naive, the recommended dose for you is Reyataz 300 mg in combination with ritonavir 100 mg once daily.

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs affect each person differently, we cannot guarantee that this list includes all possible dosages. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always to speak with your doctor or pharmacist about dosages that are right for you.
Pharmacist's Advice
Healthline Pharmacist Editorial Team

Keeping human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection under control requires lifelong treatment. There can be serious health consequences if you don’t take this drug exactly how your doctor tells you.

If You Don’t Take It at All

If you don’t take it at all, your HIV infection will eventually reduce your immunity to a point that your body won’t be able to defend itself against many types of infections. You may not be able to defend against infections that are commonly cured in people who don’t have HIV infection.

If You Stop or Miss Doses

If you stop taking this medication, miss doses, or don’t take it on schedule, the amount of medication in your body fluctuates. This can allow the HIV in your body to become resistant to the drug, which means the drug stops working.

If You Don’t Take It on Schedule

Taking your drug at the same time every day keeps a constant amount of the drug in your body. This helps make the drug as effective as possible at keeping the virus under control.

What to Do if You Miss a Dose

If you’re just a few hours late for your daily dose, take it as soon as you remember.

If it's just a few hours until your next dose, only take a single dose. Never try to catch up by taking a double dose. This could result in toxic side effects.

How Can I Tell if the Drug is Working?

To see how well your treatment is working, your doctor will check your:

  • virus count. A virus count measures the number of copies of the HIV virus in your body. A decreased virus count is a sign that your treatment is working.
  • CD4 cell count. A CD4 count measures the number of CD4 cells in your body. CD4 cells are white blood cells that fight infection. An increased CD4 count is a sign that your HIV treatment is working.

Reyataz is a long-term drug treatment.

Don’t cut or crush the oral capsule

If you can’t swallow the capsule, ask your doctor about the oral powder form.

Store Reyataz capsules at 77°F (25°C)

You can keep them briefly in temperatures as low as 59°F (15°C) and as high as 86°F (30°C).

Store Reyataz oral powder below 86°F (30°C). After mixing the powder with food or a beverage, you can keep it for no more than an hour at room temperature: 68–77°F (20–25°C).

Store the powder in the original packet and don’t open it until you’re ready to use it.

If you’re traveling, call ahead to see if a pharmacy can supply your medication

Not all pharmacies stock this medication and may need to special order it.

Clinical Monitoring

To see how well your treatment is working, your doctor will check your:

  • Virus count. The virus count measures the number of copies of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) in your body. A decrease in the number of copies is a sign that your treatment is working.
  • CD4 cell count. A CD4 cell count measures the amount of CD4 cells in your body. CD4 cells are white blood cells that fight infection. An increased CD4 count is a sign that your treatment is working.

Liver Function: Your doctor may test your liver function before and during treatment. Some people have had changes in liver enzyme blood tests while taking the drug.

Blood Sugar Tests: Your doctor may check your blood sugar and do other blood tests for diabetes before and during treatment. If your blood sugar increases, you may need to start monitoring it with a home glucose monitor.

Not every pharmacy stocks this drug, so call ahead

If you only need a few capsules, you should call and ask if your pharmacy dispenses only a small number of capsules. Some pharmacies can't dispense only part of a bottle.

This drug is often available from specialty pharmacies through your insurance plan. These pharmacies operate like mail order pharmacies and ship the drug to you.

In larger cities, there will often be human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) pharmacies where you can have your prescriptions filled. Ask your doctor if there's an HIV pharmacy in your area.

Hidden Costs

If you have diabetes, you may need to monitor your blood sugar more closely while taking Reyataz. You may need additional blood glucose testing supplies and more lab work while taking the drug.

Insurance

Many insurance companies will require a prior authorization before they approve the prescription and pay for Reyataz. Your doctor may need to do paperwork for you, which could take a week or two.

Are There Any Alternatives?

There are other drugs and combinations that can treat HIV infection. Some may be more suitable for you than others. Talk to your doctor about possible alternatives.

What does the pill look like?

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SECTION 5 of 5

How Much Does atazanavir Cost?

Oral capsule
We've partnered with GoodRX so you can compare prices and save money on your next prescription. Check out the lowest cash prices below and enter your zip code to find the best deal near you.

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Lowest price for atazanavir

Membership warehouse $1,288.04
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Content developed in collaboration with Susan J. Bliss, RPh, MBA

Medically reviewed by Creighton University, Center for Drug Information and Evidence-Based Practice on April 24, 2015

Disclaimer: Healthline has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up-to-date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or other healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.

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