FDA Approves ViiV Healthcare's Retrovir

Treating HIV infection when used along with other medicines.

It is also used with other medicines to help prevent women from passing the HIV virus to the fetus during pregnancy.

Retrovir is an antiviral. It works by blocking the reproduction of the HIV virus.

Retrovir is an HIV medication. It is in a category of HIV medications called nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTIs). Retrovir prevents HIV from altering the genetic material of healthy CD4 cells. This prevents the cells from producing new virus and decreases the amount of virus in the body.

Retrovir, manufactured by ViiV Healthcare, was the first drug approved for the treatment of HIV, in 1987.

Generic versions of zidovudine for distribution in the United States were approved in September 2005: zidovudine tablets (made by Ranbaxy Laboratories of Gurgaon, India; Aurobindo Pharma of Hyderabad, India; and Roxane Laboratories of Columbus, Ohio) and zidovudine oral solution (made by Aurobindo Pharma). A capsule version of zidovudine (made by Aurobindo Pharma) was approved for sale in the United States in March 2006.

Retrovir must be used in combination with other HIV drugs.

Retrovir is prescribed for adults infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). HIV causes the immune system to break down so that it can no longer respond effectively to infection, leading to the fatal disease known as acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). Retrovir slows down the progress of HIV. Combining Retrovir with other drugs such as Epivir and Crixivan can help slow the progression.

Retrovir is also prescribed for HIV-infected children over 3 months of age who have symptoms of HIV or who have no symptoms but, through testing, have shown evidence of impaired immunity.

Retrovir taken during pregnancy often prevents transmission of HIV from mother to child.

Signs and symptoms of HIV disease are significant weight loss, fever, diarrhea, infections, and problems with the nervous system.

This drug is used with other medications to help control your HIV infection, thereby improving your quality of life. It may also lower your risk of complications from HIV (such as new infections, cancers). Zidovudine belongs to a class of drugs known as nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors-NRTIs.

Zidovudine is used in pregnant women to prevent passing the HIV virus to the unborn baby. This medication is also used in newborns born to mothers infected with HIV to prevent infection in the newborns.

Zidovudine is not a cure for HIV infection and it does not prevent the spread of HIV to others through sexual contact or blood contamination (such as sharing used needles).