As with any medicine, side effects are possible with zidovudine. However, not everyone who takes the drug will experience side effects. In fact, most people tolerate it quite well. If side effects do occur, in most cases, they are minor and either require no treatment or can easily be treated by you or your healthcare provider. Serious side effects are less common.
Common side effects of zidovudine include but are not limited to:
- A general ill feeling (malaise)
- Loss of appetite.
(Click Side Effects of Zidovudine to learn more, including potentially serious side effects that you should report immediately to your healthcare provider.)
Zidovudine can interact with a number of other medications (see Drug Interactions With Zidovudine).
You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking zidovudine if you have:
- Anemia, neutropenia, or any other low blood count or blood disorder
- Liver disease, such as liver failure, cirrhosis, or hepatitis
- Kidney disease, such as kidney failure (renal failure).
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you are:
- Pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant (see Retrovir and Pregnancy)
- Breastfeeding (see Retrovir and Breastfeeding).
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about all other medicines you are taking, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
(Click Precautions and Warnings With Zidovudine to learn more, including information on who should not take the drug.)