Adefovir

Generic name: Pronounced as (a def' o veer)
Brand names
  • Hepsera®
Click on drug name to hear pronunciation

Medical Content Reviewed By HelloPharmacist Staff

Last Revised - 05/15/2018

Do not stop taking adefovir without talking to your doctor. When you stop taking adefovir your hepatitis may get worse. This is most likely to happen during the first 3 months after you stop taking adefovir. Be careful not to miss doses or run out of adefovir. Tell your doctor if you have or have ever had liver disease other than hepatitis B or cirrhosis (scarring of the liver). If you experience any of the following symptoms after you stop taking adefovir, call your doctor immediately: extreme tiredness, weakness, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, yellowing of the skin or eyes, dark-colored urine, light-colored bowel movements, and muscle or joint pain.

Adefovir may cause kidney damage. Tell your doctor if you have or have ever had kidney disease, high blood pressure, or diabetes. Tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking or have ever taken any of the following medications: aminoglycoside antibiotics such as amikacin, gentamicin, kanamycin, neomycin, streptomycin, and tobramycin (Tobi,); aspirin and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) and naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn); cyclosporine (Gengraf, Neoral, Sandimmune); tacrolimus (Prograf); or vancomycin. If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately: confusion; decreased urination; or swelling of the hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs.

If you have HIV or AIDS that is not being treated with medications and you take adefovir, your HIV infection may become difficult to treat. Tell your doctor if you have HIV or AIDS or if you have unprotected sex with more than one partner or use injectable street drugs. Your doctor may test you for HIV infection before you begin treatment with adefovir and at any time during your treatment when there is a chance that you were exposed to HIV.

Adefovir, when used alone or in combination with other antiviral medications, can cause serious or life-threatening damage to the liver and a condition called lactic acidosis (a build-up of acid in the blood). The risk that you will develop lactic acidosis may be higher if you are a woman, if you are overweight, or if you have been treated with medications for hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection for a long time. Tell your doctor if you have or have ever had liver disease. If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately: confusion; unusual bleeding or bruising; yellowing of the skin or eyes; dark-colored urine; light-colored bowel movements; difficulty breathing; stomach pain or swelling; nausea; vomiting; unusual muscle pain; loss of appetite for at least a few days; lack of energy; flu-like symptoms; itching; feeling cold, especially in the arms or legs; dizziness or lightheadedness; fast or irregular heartbeat; or extreme weakness or tiredness.

Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory before, during, and for a few months after your treatment with adefovir. Your doctor will order certain lab tests to check your body's response to adefovir during this time.

Talk to your doctor about the risks of taking adefovir.

Adefovir is used to treat chronic (long-term) hepatitis B infection (swelling of the liver caused by a virus) in adults and children 12 years of age and older. Adefovir is in a class of medications called nucleotide analogs. It works by decreasing the amount of hepatitis B virus (HBV) in the body. Adefovir will not cure hepatitis B and may not prevent complications of chronic hepatitis B such as cirrhosis of the liver or liver cancer. Adefovir may not prevent the spread of hepatitis B to other people.

Adefovir comes as a tablet to take by mouth. It is usually taken once a day with or without food. Take adefovir at around the same time every day. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take adefovir exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.

This medication may be prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Before taking adefovir,

  • tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to adefovir; any other medications; or any of the ingredients in adefovir tablets. Ask your pharmacist for a list of the ingredients.

  • tell your doctor and pharmacist what other prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products you are taking or plan to take. Be sure to mention the medications listed in the IMPORTANT WARNING section and lamivudine (Combivir, Epivir, Epivir-HBV, Epzicom, Triumeq, or Trizivir) or tenofovir (Viread, in Atripla, in Complera, in Stribild, in Truvada). Your doctor may need to change the doses of your medications or monitor you carefully for side effects. Do not take any other medications while you are taking adefovir unless your doctor has told you that you should.

  • do not take adefovir if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. If you become pregnant while taking adefovir, call your doctor. Do not breastfeed while taking adefovir.

  • if you are having surgery, including dental surgery, tell the doctor or dentist that you are taking adefovir.

Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, continue your normal diet.

If you remember the missed dose on the day that you were supposed to take it, take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if you do not remember the missed dose until the next day, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take more than one dose of adefovir on the same day. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.

  • Adefovir may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:

    • weakness

    • headache

    • diarrhea

    • gas

    • indigestion

    • sore throat

    • runny nose

    • rash

  • Adefovir may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.

  • If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online (http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch) or by phone (1-800-332-1088).

Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom).

It is important to keep all medication out of sight and reach of children as many containers (such as weekly pill minders and those for eye drops, creams, patches, and inhalers) are not child-resistant and young children can open them easily. To protect young children from poisoning, always lock safety caps and immediately place the medication in a safe location – one that is up and away and out of their sight and reach. http://www.upandaway.org

Unneeded medications should be disposed of in special ways to ensure that pets, children, and other people cannot consume them. However, you should not flush this medication down the toilet. Instead, the best way to dispose of your medication is through a medicine take-back program. Talk to your pharmacist or contact your local garbage/recycling department to learn about take-back programs in your community. See the FDA's Safe Disposal of Medicines website (http://goo.gl/c4Rm4p) for more information if you do not have access to a take-back program.

In case of overdose, call the poison control helpline at 1-800-222-1222. Information is also available online at https://www.poisonhelp.org/help. If the victim has collapsed, had a seizure, has trouble breathing, or can't be awakened, immediately call emergency services at 911.

Symptoms of overdose may include the following:

  • upset stomach

  • stomach discomfort

Do not let anyone else take your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.

It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.

Drug Interaction
Pamidronate Injection Pamidronate Injection The risk or severity of nephrotoxicity and hypocalcemia can be increased when Adefovir dipivoxil is combined with Pamidronic acid.
Vancomycin Injection Vancomycin Injection Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Vancomycin which could result in a higher serum level.
Zidovudine Injection Zidovudine Injection The excretion of Zidovudine can be decreased when combined with Adefovir dipivoxil.
Tenofovir Tenofovir The serum concentration of Tenofovir can be increased when it is combined with Adefovir dipivoxil.
Tinidazole Tinidazole Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Tinidazole which could result in a higher serum level.
Ibandronate Ibandronate The risk or severity of nephrotoxicity and hypocalcemia can be increased when Adefovir dipivoxil is combined with Ibandronate.
Rasagiline Rasagiline Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Rasagiline which could result in a higher serum level.
Live Shingles (Zoster) Vaccine (ZVL) Live Shingles (Zoster) Vaccine (ZVL) The therapeutic efficacy of Varicella Zoster Vaccine (Live/attenuated) can be decreased when used in combination with Adefovir dipivoxil.
Azacitidine Injection Azacitidine Injection Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Azacitidine which could result in a higher serum level.
Doripenem Injection Doripenem Injection Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Doripenem which could result in a higher serum level.
Ceftaroline Injection Ceftaroline Injection The risk or severity of nephrotoxicity can be increased when Adefovir dipivoxil is combined with Ceftaroline fosamil.
Ipilimumab Injection Ipilimumab Injection Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Ipilimumab which could result in a higher serum level.
Terbutaline Injection Terbutaline Injection Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Terbutaline which could result in a higher serum level.
Roflumilast Roflumilast Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Roflumilast which could result in a higher serum level.
Rivaroxaban Rivaroxaban Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Rivaroxaban which could result in a higher serum level.
Ruxolitinib Ruxolitinib Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Ruxolitinib which could result in a higher serum level.
Deferiprone Deferiprone Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Deferiprone which could result in a higher serum level.
Enzalutamide Enzalutamide Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Enzalutamide which could result in a higher serum level.
Mirabegron Mirabegron Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Mirabegron which could result in a higher serum level.
Teduglutide Injection Teduglutide Injection Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Teduglutide which could result in a higher serum level.
Alogliptin Alogliptin Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Alogliptin which could result in a higher serum level.
Pomalidomide Pomalidomide Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Pomalidomide which could result in a higher serum level.
Canagliflozin Canagliflozin Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Canagliflozin which could result in a higher serum level.
Testosterone Injection Testosterone Injection Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Testosterone which could result in a higher serum level.
Caspofungin Injection Caspofungin Injection The excretion of Adefovir dipivoxil can be decreased when combined with Caspofungin.
Viloxazine Viloxazine Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Viloxazine which could result in a higher serum level.
Tobramycin Injection Tobramycin Injection Tobramycin may decrease the excretion rate of Adefovir dipivoxil which could result in a higher serum level.
Tolmetin Tolmetin The risk or severity of nephrotoxicity can be increased when Tolmetin is combined with Adefovir dipivoxil.
Sulindac Sulindac The risk or severity of nephrotoxicity can be increased when Sulindac is combined with Adefovir dipivoxil.
Sucralfate Sucralfate Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Sucralfate which could result in a higher serum level.
Tetracycline Tetracycline Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Tetracycline which could result in a higher serum level.
Sulfadiazine Sulfadiazine Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Sulfadiazine which could result in a higher serum level.
Azathioprine Azathioprine Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Azathioprine which could result in a higher serum level.
Warfarin Warfarin Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Warfarin which could result in a higher serum level.
Triamterene Triamterene The risk or severity of nephrotoxicity can be increased when Triamterene is combined with Adefovir dipivoxil.
Valproic Acid Valproic Acid The excretion of Adefovir dipivoxil can be decreased when combined with Valproic acid.
Liothyronine Liothyronine Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Liothyronine which could result in a higher serum level.
Tolbutamide Tolbutamide Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Tolbutamide which could result in a higher serum level.
Tolazamide Tolazamide Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Tolazamide which could result in a higher serum level.
Baclofen Baclofen Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Baclofen which could result in a higher serum level.
Aspirin Aspirin The risk or severity of nephrotoxicity can be increased when Adefovir dipivoxil is combined with Acetylsalicylic acid.
Temazepam Temazepam Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Temazepam which could result in a higher serum level.
Triazolam Triazolam Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Triazolam which could result in a higher serum level.
Trimethoprim Trimethoprim Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Trimethoprim which could result in a higher serum level.
Timolol Timolol Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Timolol which could result in a higher serum level.
Verapamil Verapamil Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Verapamil which could result in a higher serum level.
Auranofin Auranofin Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Auranofin which could result in a higher serum level.
Dipivefrin Ophthalmic Dipivefrin Ophthalmic Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Sorbitol which could result in a higher serum level.
Aztreonam Injection Aztreonam Injection Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Aztreonam which could result in a higher serum level.
Tramadol Tramadol Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Tramadol which could result in a higher serum level.
Ticlopidine Ticlopidine Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Ticlopidine which could result in a higher serum level.
Gemcitabine Injection Gemcitabine Injection Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Gemcitabine which could result in a higher serum level.
Celecoxib Celecoxib The risk or severity of nephrotoxicity can be increased when Celecoxib is combined with Adefovir dipivoxil.
Tolterodine Tolterodine Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Tolterodine which could result in a higher serum level.
Rabeprazole Rabeprazole Adefovir dipivoxil may decrease the excretion rate of Rabeprazole which could result in a higher serum level.

Content provided by: AHFS® Patient Medication Information™. © Copyright, 2021. The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists