Cabenuva (cabotegravir/rilpivirine) is a prescription drug used to treat HIV in adults and certain children. The drug is given as two injections into a muscle, typically once per month or once every 2 months.

This section describes the usual dosages of Cabenuva. Keep reading to learn more.

What is Cabenuva’s form?

Cabenuva comes as a liquid suspension (a type of liquid mixture) that’s injected into your gluteal (butt) muscle by your doctor or another healthcare professional. Cabenuva contains two active ingredients,* cabotegravir and rilpivirine, which are given as two separate injections.

Cabenuva comes as an extended-release suspension. “Extended release” means the active ingredients are slowly released into your body over a long period of time. This allows you to receive Cabenuva injections less often than oral tablet forms of cabotegravir and rilpivirine.

* An active ingredient is what makes a drug work.

What strengths does Cabenuva come in?

Cabenuva is available in the following strengths:

  • 400 milligrams (mg) cabotegravir/600 mg rilpivirine
  • 600 mg cabotegravir/900 mg rilpivirine

What are the usual dosages of Cabenuva?

Your doctor will start you on the recommended dosage of Cabenuva. They’ll discuss your dose and dosing schedule with you before you start treatment.

Dosage for HIV

The typical Cabenuva dosage used to treat HIV in adults depends on your dosing schedule and other factors.

Before you start Cabenuva treatment, your doctor may first prescribe cabotegravir (Vocabria) and rilpivirine (Edurant) oral tablets for you. You’ll take these tablets once per day with food for at least 28 days.

Cabotegravir and rilpivirine are the active ingredients in Cabenuva. So, taking the tablet form first helps your doctor see how your body responds to these medications before you begin receiving Cabenuva injections.

Once you’re ready to begin Cabenuva treatment, you’ll either receive Cabenuva injections once per month or once every 2 months. You and your doctor will discuss which dosing schedule is best for you.

If receiving one dose per month: You’ll start treatment by receiving a one-time dose containing 600 mg of cabotegravir and 900 mg of rilpivirine. After that, you’ll receive injections containing 400 mg of cabotegravir and 600 mg of rilpivirine starting in month 2 of treatment and every month after that.

If receiving one dose every 2 months: You’ll start treatment by receiving two doses containing 600 mg of cabotegravir and 900 mg of rilpivirine. These doses will be given 1 month apart. Then, you’ll receive injections containing that same dose starting in month 4 of treatment and every 2 months after that.

If your doctor determines your dosing schedule should change (from one dose per month to one dose every 2 months or vice versa), they’ll discuss this change with you.

What’s the dosage of Cabenuva for children?

Cabenuva is used to treat HIV in children ages 12 years and older who weigh at least 35 kilograms (about 77 pounds).

The dosage used in children is the same as the dosage for adults. To learn more, see “What are the usual dosages of Cabenuva?” above.

If you have questions about Cabenuva’s dosage for children, talk with your child’s doctor.

Is Cabenuva used long term?

Yes, Cabenuva is typically used as a long-term treatment. If you and your doctor determine that it’s safe and effective for your condition, you’ll receive Cabenuva injections long term.

You’ll receive Cabenuva as two injections into your gluteal (butt) muscle at your doctor’s office or a clinic. Each injection is given into a different area of your gluteal muscle.

If you have questions about receiving Cabenuva injections, talk with your doctor.

If you miss an appointment to receive a dose of Cabenuva injection, call your doctor’s office as soon as possible to reschedule. Also, let them know whether you won’t be able to make a future appointment. Typically, you can receive a Cabenuva injection within 7 days before or after you’re due for that dose.

It’s important to stay on track with your Cabenuva dosing schedule to help keep HIV levels low or undetectable. Missing doses can make it harder to treat HIV. If you have difficulty keeping appointments for your Cabenuva injections, your doctor may recommend changes to your treatment plan.

If you need help remembering your appointments to receive Cabenuva, try downloading a reminder app on your phone.

The sections above describe the usual dosages provided by the manufacturer. If your doctor recommends Cabenuva for you, they’ll prescribe the dosage that’s right for you.

Talk with your doctor if you have questions or concerns about your current dosage.

Here are some examples of questions you may want to ask your doctor:

  • Is the risk of side effects from Cabenuva lower if I receive one dose every 2 months rather than one dose per month?
  • Is the injection form of Cabenuva as effective as the oral tablet forms of cabotegravir and rilpivirine?
  • How does Cabenuva’s dosage compare with that of Apretude?

To learn more about Cabenuva, see these articles:

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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 another 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.