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Sunlenca (oral/injection)

Generic name: lenacapavir (oral or injection)

Brand name: Sunlenca
Classification of drugs: miscellaneous antivirals

What is lenacapavir?

Lenacapavir is a drug used by adults who are taking other antiviral medications for treatment of HIV, a virus that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). Lenacapavir is not an effective treatment for HIV or AIDS. Lenacapavir is administered after other HIV medications have failed to have any effect, been discontinued, or were unable to be taken. Lenacapavir can also be used for reasons not mentioned in this medication guide.

Side effects of Lenacapavir

See a doctor immediately. Get medical attention immediately if you notice symptoms that indicate an allergic reaction, such as difficulty breathing, hives, or swelling of your lips, face, or tongue. Lenacapavir may alter your body's immune system (even months or weeks after taking this medication). Consult your physician to determine whether you suffer from:

  • Indications of a new infection: fever, night sweats, swollen glands, sores from a cold, wheezing, cough, weight loss, diarrhea;
  • Difficulty swallowing or speaking; difficulties with balance, eye movement, and prickly or weak feelings; trouble swallowing, balance, or eye movement problems;
  • Swelling in your throat or neck (enlarged thyroid), menstrual cycles, impotence

Common negative side effects of Sunlenca could include:

  • The swelling, bruising, heat, and redness Oozing or bleeding after the injection was administered

This isn't a complete list of possible side effects, and other side effects could occur. Consult your physician for advice regarding medical effects. You can report any adverse reactions to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.


Inform your doctor about all other medicines you are taking. Certain drugs shouldn't be taken with lenacapavir.

Before taking this medication

There could be additional reasons not to make use of lenacapavir when used in conjunction with other medications, including efavirenz, nevirapine, and the rifabutin drug; rifampin or rifapen; carbamazepine and oxcarbazepine; dexamethasone; primidone; phenytoin; prednisone; St. John's wort; phenobarbital; or other medicines that are barbiturate.

Inform your doctor if you have ever suffered from:

  • An autoimmune disease such as Graves' disease polymyositis, Graves' disease, or Guillain-Barre syndrome.

To stop HIV in a baby's first year, make sure you take all medications to prevent your infection during pregnancy. Your name might be listed on the registry of antiviral pregnant women. It is unknown whether lenacapavir could affect a baby who is not yet born. Consult your physician if you are expecting or planning to become pregnant. Women who have HIV are not allowed to feed their babies. HIV can infect your infant through breast milk.

How to take lenacapavir?

Follow the instructions on the prescription label and go through all medication guides or instruction sheets. Make sure you use the medicine precisely as directed. The initial dose of lenacapavir is usually delivered in tablet form or by injection. This is when maintenance injections are given every 6 months (26 weeks). Your physician will decide on the best treatment for you. You can use lenacapavir either with or without food. A doctor will administer this injection beneath the skin of the abdomen. Lenacapavir could affect other medicines for up to nine months following the last injection. Place the container in the original container, free of heat and moisture.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Consult your physician for the appropriate treatment in the event that you don't make an appointment to receive a lenacapavir injection.

What happens if I overdose?

Get medical attention in an emergency or contact the Poison Help line toll-free at 1-800-222-1222.

Avoid this

Follow your doctor's advice regarding any dietary restrictions, drinks, food, or any activity.

Interaction with other drugs

Inform your doctor about all the medications you take. A variety of drugs can affect lenacapavir, particularly:

  • Phenobarbital or any other barbiturate medication;
  • John's wort;
  • An antibiotic—rifabutin, rifampin, or rifapentine;
  • Cancer medicine—apalutamide, enzalutamide, and mitotane;
  • Hiv or aids medicine—efavirenz, nevirapine;
  • Seizure medicine—carbamazepine, oxcarbazepine, phenytoin, primidone; or
  • Steroid medicine—dexamethasone, prednisone.

This list isn't complete, and a variety of other medications could impact lenacapavir. This includes over-the-counter and prescription drugs, vitamins, and herbal supplements. The interactions of all drugs are included here.