Antiretroviral medications - reverse transcriptase inhibitors

Selected Medications

  • Ribavirin
    • Copegus, Rebetol
  • Zidovudine
    • Retrovir
  • Didanosine
    • Videx
  • Zalcitabine
    • Hivid
  • Stavudine
    • Zerit
  • Lamivudine
    • Epivir

Depletions

Copper

It's rare to be deficient in copper. Symptoms of a long-term deficiency include anemia, slow growth, osteoporosis, joint problems, trouble breathing, fatigue, skin problems, irregular heartbeat, and being more likely to get an infection.

Zinc

Signs and symptoms of zinc deficiency include loss of appetite or sense of taste, growth retardation, skin changes, and increased susceptibility to infection.

Editorial Note

The information presented here covers some of the nutrients that may be lowered when you take certain medications. The signs and symptoms listed can be caused by other conditions. So if you have these signs and symptoms, it doesn't always mean you have low levels of these nutrients. Many things affect the level of nutrients, including your medical history, diet, and lifestyle, as well as how long you have been taking the medication. Please talk with your health care provider. He or she can best address your health care needs and see if you are at risk for low levels of any nutrients.

Supporting Research

Ames BN. Micronutrient deficiencies: A major cause of DNA damage. Ann NY Acad Sci. 2000;889:87-106.

Araya M, Pizarro F, Olivares M, Arredondo M, González M, Méndez M. Understanding copper homeostasis in humans and copper effects on health. Biol Res. 2006;39(1):183-7.

Donnelly PS, Xiao Z, Wedd AG.Copper and Alzheimer's disease. Curr Opin Chem Biol. 2007 Apr;11(2):128-33.

Hambidge M. Human zinc deficiency. J Nutr. 2000;130(5S Suppl):1344S-1349S.

Maret W, Sandstead HH. Zinc requirements and the risks and benefits of zinc supplementation. J Trace Elem Med Biol. 2006;20(1):3-18.

Pelton R, LaValle J, Hawkins EB, et al. Drug Induced Nutrient Depletion Handbook. Hudson, OH:LexiComp, Inc.;2001:429-430.

Powell SR. The antioxidant properties of zinc. J Nutr. 2000;130(5S Suppl):1447S-54S.

Tubek S, Grzanka P, Tubek I. Role of Zinc in Hemostasis: A Review. Biol Trace Elem Res. 2007; [Epub ahead of print].

Version Info

  • Last Reviewed on 09/30/2012
  • Steven D. Ehrlich, NMD, Solutions Acupuncture, a private practice specializing in complementary and alternative medicine, Phoenix, AZ. Review provided by VeriMed HealthCare Network.

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This page was last updated: May 7, 2013

         
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