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Tesamorelin is licensed to treat abnormal fat deposits around the abdomen in people with HIV. This fat accumulation is a side effect of many drugs used to treat HIV. Tesamorelin causes an increase in growth hormone, which leads to a decrease in this layer of fat. The medication is injected once a day. Common side effects include redness and pain at the injection site.

What Is Tesamorelin?

Tesamorelin acetate (Egrifta™) is a prescription medication approved to reduce excess abdominal (stomach) fat in people with HIV who also have lipodystrophy. Lipodystrophy is a common side effect of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) medications; it involves excessive fat accumulation around the stomach. Tesamorelin is taken by a subcutaneous injection (an injection just below the skin).
 
(Click What Is Tesamorelin Used For? for more information on this topic, including possible off-label uses.)
 

Are There Side Effects?

Just like any medicine, tesamorelin can cause side effects. However, not everyone who takes the drug will experience problems. Most people tolerate it quite well.
 
If side effects do occur, in most cases, they are minor and either require no treatment or are treated easily by you or your healthcare provider. Serious reactions are less common.
 
Some of the common side effects seen with tesamorelin include:
 
  • Pain and redness at the injection site
  • Muscle pain
  • Fluid retention in the extremities
  • Numbness.
     
(Click Side Effects of Tesamorelin to learn more, including potentially serious side effects you should report immediately to your healthcare provider.)
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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