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What is Descovy (emtricitabine/tenofovir alafenamide) for?

Descovy (emtricitabine/tenofovir alafenamide) is indicated for the treatment of individuals infected with human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1), a virus that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). It is used in adults and adolescents aged over 12 years and who weigh at least 35 kg1.

How does Descovy (emtricitabine/tenofovir alafenamide) work?

Each tablet of Descovy (emtricitabine/tenofovir alafenamide) contains 200 mg of emtricitabine and either 10 or 25 mg of tenofovir alafenamide. Inside the body tenofovir alafenamide is converted into the active substance tenofovir. Tenofovir and emtricitabine block the activity of the enzyme made by the virus to reproduce itself in the cells it has infected. It thus keeps the amount of HIV in the blood at a low level.

Descovy (emtricitabine/tenofovir alafenamide) does not cure HIV infection or AIDS, but it can prevent damages to the immune system and the development of infections and diseases associated with AIDS.

Is Descovy (emtricitabine/tenofovir alafenamide) approved?

Descovy (emtricitabine/tenofovir alafenamide) was approved For the treatment of HIV-1 infection* by:

  • FDA on April 4, 20165

  • EMA (EU) on April 21, 20161

  • TGA (AUS) on November 22, 20164

*in adults and pediatric patients 12 years of age and older in combination with other antiretroviral agents.

How do I take Descovy (emtricitabine/tenofovir alafenamide)?

The FDA standard dosage is:

  • 1 tablet 200 mg / 25 mg daily

The EMA and TGA standard dosage is:

  • 200 mg / 10 mg once daily if taken together with atazanavir with ritonavir or cobicistat, darunavir with ritonavir or cobicistat, or lopinavir with ritonavir

  • 200 mg / 25 mg once daily if taken with dolutegravir, efavirenz, maraviroc, nevirapine, rilpivirine, or raltegravir2,4

Complete information about Descovy (emtricitabine / tenofovir alafenamide) dosage and administration can be found in the resources section2,3,4.

Note: Consult your treating doctor for personalised dosing.

Known side effects of Descovy (emtricitabine/tenofovir alafenamide)

The most common side effect is nausea (feeling sick). Other common side effects include diarrhoea and headache1

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