Drugs A - Z

Entecavir Oral solution

It is used to treat chronic hepatitis B

Generic Name: entecavir

Brand Names: Baraclude

There is an FDA Alert for this drug. Click here to view it.

  • Severe acute exacerbations of hepatitis reported in patients who have discontinued anti-hepatitis B virus (HBV) therapy, including entecavir. (See Exacerbations of Hepatitis under Cautions.) Closely monitor hepatic function in patients who discontinue anti-HBV therapy; if appropriate, resumption of therapy may be warranted.
  • Lactic acidosis and severe hepatomegaly with steatosis (including some fatalities) reported in patients receiving nucleoside analogs alone or in conjunction with antiretroviral agents. (See Lactic Acidosis and Severe Hepatomegaly with Steatosis under Cautions.)
  • Because of possible risk of emergence of HIV resistant to nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTIs), entecavir should not be used for treatment of HBV in HIV-infected patients who are not receiving antiretroviral therapy. (See Individuals Coinfected with HBV and HIV under Cautions.)

What is this medicine?

ENTECAVIR (en TE ka veer) is an antiviral medicine. It is used to treat chronic hepatitis B. This medicine will not cure or prevent hepatitis B infection.

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
  • immune system problems
  • kidney disease
  • other liver disease
  • an unusual or allergic reaction to entecavir, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding

How should I use this medicine?

Take this medicine by mouth. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Take this medicine on an empty stomach, at least 2 hours before or 2 hours after food. Do not take with food. Use a specially marked spoon or container to measure each dose. Ask your pharmacist if you do not have one. Household spoons are not accurate. Take your medicine at regular intervals. Do not take it more often than directed. Do not stop taking except on your doctor's advice.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. While this drug may be prescribed for children as young as 16 years old for selected conditions, precautions do apply.

What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.

What may interact with this medicine?

  • dofetilide
  • procainamide
  • quinidine
  • vancomycin

What should I watch for while using this medicine?

Visit your doctor or health care professional for regular check ups. Discuss any new symptoms with your doctor. You will need to have important blood work done while on this medicine.

Your hepatitis infection may get worse after you stop taking this medicine. Do not stop taking this medicine unless your doctor tells you to.

Hepatitis B is spread to others through sexual or blood contact. Talk to your doctor about how to stop the spread of Hepatitis B.

Tell your doctor if you also have HIV. You need to be on medicines to treat your HIV infection while you are taking this medicine.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
  • allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • breathing problems
  • dark urine
  • general ill feeling or flu-like symptoms
  • light-colored stools
  • loss of appetite
  • nausea, vomiting
  • right upper belly pain
  • unusually weak or tired
  • yellowing of the eyes or skin

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • dizziness
  • headache
  • diarrhea
  • trouble sleeping

Where should I keep my medicine?

Keep out of the reach of children.

Store at room temperature between 15 and 30 degrees C (59 and 86 degrees F). Protect from light. Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.


Last Updated: December 14, 2009
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