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New Combination Therapy Option for HIV Patients

A HIV protease inhibitor Aptivus ( tipranavir ) , has been recently approved by the Food and Drug Administration // . The capsules are to be given in combination with ritonavir for treatment of HIV-1 infected adults. This is the second drug approved for patients with advanced HIV disease, and provides a new therapy for patients with limited treatment options.

The benefits of Aptivus in combination with ritonavir, has shown to be an effective in treating patients who have tried many HIV medicines but found no success. Taking 200 mg of ritonavir twice daily was shown to boost the level of Aptivus, and lowered the amount of virus in the blood compared to the currently available anti-HIV medicines. However like all drugs it is also known to cause serious liver problems especially in patients with liver disease. Some of the adverse events seen in clinical trials include skin rashes and raised cholesterol and triglycerides levels.

Specialists also say that patients using Aptivus with low-dose ritonavir should report the use of any concomitant medication due to the possibility of potential drug interactions. Some of the drugs that can cause problems when used together with Aptivus include antiarrhythmics , antihistamines, ergot derivatives , medicines that speed up the digestive tract, herbal products and also medicines that lower cholesterol levels, and medicines to treat mental problems.

Companies Manufacturing and marketing the drugs say they intend to do post marketing studies on the drug to look at drug-drug interactions and see how Aptivus works in other groups of people, such as patients taking HIV medicines for the first time, children, and HIV-1 positive women.

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