What are the most important things to know about Kaletra?
Kaletra can cause serious, life-threatening side effects. These includeproblems, inflammation of the ( ), heart rhythm problems, severe skin rash and allergic reactions, and .
Some people taking Kaletra have had liver problems. People with a history of hepatitis B virus infection (HBV) or hepatitis C virus infection (HCV) or who have elevated results on liver function tests may have an increased risk of developing new or worsening liver problems while taking Kaletra.
Contact your health care provider right away if you have any of the following symptoms that could be signs of liver problems:
- Yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes ( )
- Dark-colored urine
- Light-colored bowel movements
- Loss of appetite for several days or longer
- Nausea or vomiting
- Pain, aching, or tenderness on the right side of your stomach/abdominal area
- Pain in the stomach area (abdominal pain)
- Sensation of abnormal heartbeats
Contact your health care provider right away if you develop a rash while taking Kaletra. Stop taking Kaletra and get medical help right away if you develop a rash with any of the following symptoms:
- General ill feeling
- Extreme tiredness
- Muscle or joint aches
- Blistering or peeling skin
- Blisters or sores in your mouth
- Redness or swelling of the eyes ( )
- Swelling of your face, lips, mouth, tongue, or throat
- Trouble breathing or swallowing
Kaletra oral solution contains alcohol and propylene glycol. These substances may cause side effects in babies who take Kaletra oral solution. Contact your health care provider right away if your baby appears too sleepy or his or her breathing changes.
Taking Kaletra with certain medicines may cause serious, life-threatening side effects. Tell your health care provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
While taking Kaletra, it is important to keep all of your appointments with your health care provider.
What is Kaletra?
Kaletra is a prescription medicine approved by the U.S.(FDA) for the treatment of HIV in adults and children. Kaletra is always used in combination with other HIV medicines.
Kaletra contains two different medicines: lopinavir and ritonavir.
For more information on the use of Kaletra in people with HIV, please refer to the Guidelines for the Use of Antiretroviral Agents in Adults and Adolescents Living with HIV and the Guidelines for the Use of Antiretroviral Agents in Pediatric HIV Infection.
HIV medicines cannot cure HIV/AIDS, but taking HIV medicines every day helps people with HIV live longer, healthier lives. HIV medicines also reduce the risk of HIV. If you are taking HIV medicines, do not cut down on, skip, or stop taking them unless your health care provider tells you to.
What should I tell my health care provider before taking Kaletra?
Before taking Kaletra, tell your health care provider:
- If you have ever had a serious skin rash or an allergic reaction to either of the HIV medicines in Kaletra (lopinavir or ritonavir) or any other medicines.
- If you have ever had pancreas problems.
- If you have liver problems, including hepatitis B virus infection (HBV) or hepatitis C virus infection (HCV).
- If you have any heart problems, including a condition called congenital long QT .
- If you have low potassium in your blood.
- If you have .
- If you have high .
- If you have .
- If you have any other medical conditions.
- If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. You should not take Kaletra oral solution during pregnancy. Kaletra oral solution contains alcohol and propylene glycol, and there is no safe level of alcohol exposure during pregnancy. Kaletra tablets should not be taken on a once daily dosing schedule during pregnancy. Talk to your health care provider about the risks and benefits of taking Kaletra during pregnancy. For more information on the use of Kaletra during pregnancy, please refer to the Recommendations for the Use of Antiretroviral Drugs in Pregnant Women with HIV Infection and Interventions to Reduce Perinatal HIV Transmission in the United States.
- If you are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. For women with HIV in the United States, the Guideline does not recommend breastfeeding. Before your baby is born, or if you are already breastfeeding, talk to your health care provider to discuss alternative options for feeding your baby.
- If you are using HIV and Birth Control infographic. -based birth control (such as pills, implants, or vaginal rings). Kaletra may make these forms of birth control less effective. Your health care provider can help you decide how to adjust your birth control while you are taking Kaletra. For more information about using birth control and HIV medicines at the same time, view the HIVinfo
- About other prescription and nonprescription medicines, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products (particularly St. John's wort) you are taking or plan to take. Kaletra may affect the way other medicines or products work, and other medicines or products may affect how Kaletra works. Taking Kaletra together with certain medicines or products may cause serious, life-threatening side effects.
How should I take Kaletra?
Kaletra comes in the following forms and strengths:
- Tablets containing 100 mg lopinavir and 25 mg ritonavir
- Tablets containing 200 mg lopinavir and 50 mg ritonavir
- Oral solution containing 80 mg/mL lopinavir and 20 mg/mL ritonavir
Take Kaletra according to your health care provider’s instructions.
If you are giving Kaletra to your child, follow your health care provider’s instructions. Kaletra dosing for children is based on weight, so tell your health care provider if your child’s weight changes.
Kaletra tablets can be taken with or without food. Swallow the tablets whole. Do not chew, break, or crush the tablets.
Take Kaletra oral solution with food.
Always take Kaletra in combination with other HIV medicines. If you are also taking the HIV medicine didanosine (brand name: Videx or Videx EC), follow the instructions below:
- If you take Kaletra tablets: You can take didanosine at the same time as Kaletra tablets, without food.
- If you take Kaletra oral solution: Take didanosine either 1 hour before or 2 hours after taking Kaletra oral solution.
If you have taken too much Kaletra, contact your health care provider or local poison control center (1-800-222-1222) right away, or go to the nearest hospital emergency room.
For more information on how to take Kaletra, see the FDA drug label.
What should I do if I forget a dose?
If you miss aof Kaletra, take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. But if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and just take your next dose at the regular time. Do not take two doses at the same time to make up for a missed dose.
What side effects can Kaletra cause?
Kaletra may cause side effects. Some side effects of Kaletra can be serious as noted above. Many side effects from HIV medicines, such as nausea or occasional dizziness, are manageable. See the HIVinfo fact sheet on HIV Medicines and Side Effects for more information.
Other possible side effects of Kaletra include:
- Diabetes and high blood sugar ( ).
- Increases in the levels of cholesterol and
- Increased bleeding in people with hemophilia.
- Changes in body fat ( ).
- Changes in your (called or IRIS). IRIS is a condition that sometimes occurs when the immune system begins to recover after treatment with an HIV medicine. As the immune system gets stronger, it may have an increased response to a previously hidden infection.
- Kidney stones.
Tell your health care provider if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.
These are not all the possible side effects of Kaletra. To learn more about possible side effects of Kaletra, read the drug label or or talk to your health care provider or pharmacist.
You can report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 (1-800-332-1088) or online.
How should Kaletra be stored?
- Store Kaletra tablets at room temperature, 68°F to 77°F (20°C to 25°C).
- Store Kaletra oral solution in a refrigerator at 36°F to 46°F (2°C to 8°C). The refrigerated oral solution can be used until the expiration date printed on the label. Kaletra oral solution that is stored at room temperature (less than 77°F or 25°C) should be used within 2 months. Keep the oral solution away from high heat.
- Keep Kaletra in the container that it came in and keep the container tightly closed.
- Do not use Kaletra if the original seal over the container opening is broken or missing.
- Throw away Kaletra that is no longer needed or expired (out of date). Follow FDA guidelines on how to safely dispose of unused medicine.
- Keep Kaletra and all medicines out of reach of children.
Where can I find more information about Kaletra?
- For more information on the use of Kaletra in people with HIV, please refer to the Guidelines for the Use of Antiretroviral Agents in Adults and Adolescents Living with HIV and the Guidelines for the Use of Antiretroviral Agents in Pediatric HIV Infection.
- This Patient Version drug summary is based on the following FDA label(s): Solution, tablet (film coated). The Patient Counseling Information section of the label includes information for people taking Kaletra.
- Kaletra-related research studies, from .
- A list of FDA-approved HIV medicines, from HIVinfo.
Main number: 800-633-9110
Patient assistance: 800-222-6885
Last Reviewed: July 27, 2021