Precautions and Warnings With Boceprevir

Because boceprevir can cause blood cell problems, your healthcare provider will check your blood periodically for anemia and neutropenia during treatment. Boceprevir is not the best choice for everyone, so discuss the warnings and precautions with your healthcare provider to make sure it's right for you. In particular, let him or her know about your current medical conditions and any other drugs you are taking.

What Should I Tell My Healthcare Provider?

You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking boceprevir (VICTRELIS™) if you have:
  • Blood cell problems, such as anemia
  • A weakened immune system due to human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), or any other cause
  • Liver disease other than hepatitis C, such as hepatitis B, cirrhosis, or liver failure
  • Ever had an organ transplant
  • Plans to have surgery
  • Any allergies, including to foods, dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you are:
  • Pregnant, thinking of becoming pregnant, or have a female partner who is pregnant
  • Breastfeeding.
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about any other medications you are taking, including prescription and nonprescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

Specific Boceprevir Precautions and Warnings

Some warnings and precautions to be aware of prior to taking this drug include the following:
  • Boceprevir is only approved for use in combination with peginterferon alfa (Pegasys®, PEG-Intron®) and ribavirin (Copegus®, Rebetol®, Ribapak®, Ribasphere®). If you cannot take peginterferon alfa or ribavirin, you cannot take boceprevir.
  • Boceprevir can cause blood cell problems, including anemia (low red blood cells) and neutropenia (low white blood cells). Your healthcare provider will conduct periodic blood tests during treatment to monitor you for these side effects. If you develop severe anemia, your healthcare provider may reduce the dose of ribavirin. If you continue to have severe anemia, your healthcare provider may instruct you to stop taking boceprevir.
  • Your healthcare provider will have you undergo regular blood tests while you take this medication, both to make sure it is working and to check for potentially serious side effects. Be sure to keep all your healthcare appointments.
  • Boceprevir can react with a number of other medications. Some products should not be used in combination with boceprevir (see Drug Interactions With Boceprevir).
  • Boceprevir is considered a pregnancy Category B medication; however, it is always used in combination with ribavirin, which is a pregnancy Category X medication. Therefore, boceprevir should not be used in pregnant women, or in men whose partner is pregnant. Women must use two forms of birth control during treatment (see VICTRELIS and Pregnancy).
  • It is unknown if boceprevir passes through breast milk. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start, discuss this with your healthcare provider prior to taking the drug (see VICTRELIS and Breastfeeding).

Boceprevir Medication Information

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