Lopinavir/ritonavir (By mouth)


Lopinavir (loe-PIN-a-vir), Ritonavir (rit-OH-na-vir)

Treats HIV infection. This medicine does not cure HIV or AIDS, but combinations of drugs may slow the progress of the disease.

Brand Name(s)


When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

How to Use This Medicine

Liquid, Tablet

  • Take your medicine as directed.
  • Oral liquid: Take with food.
  • Tablet: You may take the tablet with or without food. Swallow the tablet whole. Do not crush, break, or chew it.
  • Measure the oral liquid medicine with a marked measuring spoon, oral syringe, or medicine cup.
  • Do not stop using this medicine without checking first with your doctor. If you stop the medicine even briefly, the virus may become harder to treat. Contact your doctor or pharmacist when your supply is running low so you do not run out.
  • This medicine should come with a Medication Guide. Ask your pharmacist for a copy if you do not have one.
  • Missed dose: Take a dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then and take a regular dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.
    • Oral liquid: Store in the refrigerator or at room temperature. If you store the medicine at room temperature, it expires after 2 months.
    • Tablet: Store at room temperature. Keep away from heat, moisture, and direct light.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Do not use this medicine if you are also using alfuzosin, cisapride, lovastatin, simvastatin, midazolam, triazolam, pimozide, rifampin, sildenafil, St John's wort, or an ergot medicine (such as dihydroergotamine, ergonovine, ergotamine, methylergonovine).
  • There are many other drugs that can interact with lopinavir/ritonavir. Make sure your doctor knows about all other medicines you are using.
  • Tell your doctor if you are using any of the following:
    • Atorvastatin, rosuvastatin, atovaquone, boceprevir, bosentan, bupropion, trazodone, clarithromycin, colchicine, digoxin, fentanyl, injectable midazolam, methadone, rifabutin, salmeterol, telaprevir
    • Birth control pills
    • Blood pressure medicine
    • Blood thinner (such as rivaroxaban, warfarin)
    • Cancer medicine (such as dasatinib, nilotinib, vinblastine, vincristine)
    • Insulin or other diabetes medicine
    • Medicine for heart rhythm problems
    • Medicine that weakens the immune system (such as cyclosporine, sirolimus, tacrolimus)
    • Medicine to treat a fungus infection
    • Medicine to treat impotence
    • Seizure medicine
    • Corticosteroid (such as budesonide, dexamethasone, fluticasone, prednisone)
  • If you also use didanosine, take it 1 hour before or 2 hours after you take Kaletra® oral liquid. Didanosine can be taken (without food) at the same time as Kaletra® tablets.
  • The oral liquid contains alcohol. Tell your doctor if you use or plan to use disulfiram or metronidazole.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or if you have liver disease (such as cirrhosis, hepatitis B or C), diabetes, heart disease, heart rhythm problems (such as long QT syndrome), high cholesterol, hemophilia, or a history of pancreas problems.
  • Do not breastfeed. You can spread HIV or AIDS to your baby through your breast milk.
  • This medicine may cause the following problems:
    • Pancreas problems
    • Liver problems
    • Changes in heart rhythm, such as PR or QT prolongation
    • High cholesterol or triglycerides
  • Your immune system may get stronger when you start taking an HIV medicine. Infections that were hidden in your body, such as pneumonia or tuberculosis, might start to have symptoms. Tell your doctor right away if you notice any changes in your health.
  • This medicine will not keep you from giving HIV to others. Always practice safe sex, even if your partner also has HIV. Do not share needles or other items that may have blood or body fluids on them.
  • Your doctor will do lab tests at regular visits to check on the effects of this medicine. Keep all appointments.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children. Never share your medicine with anyone.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Blistering, peeling, or red skin rash
  • Chest pain or fast, pounding, or uneven heartbeat
  • Dark urine or pale stools, loss of appetite, stomach pain, yellow skin or eyes
  • Fainting, dizziness, lightheadedness
  • Shaking, trembling, sweating, fast or pounding heartbeat, lightheadedness, hunger, confusion
  • Sudden and severe stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, fever, lightheadedness

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Back, joint, or muscle pain
  • Cough, runny or stuffy nose, sore throat
  • Diarrhea, nausea
  • Tiredness
  • Weight gain around your neck, upper back, breast, or waist

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Version Info

  • Last reviewed on 7/4/2015

A.D.A.M., Inc. is accredited by URAC, also known as the American Accreditation HealthCare Commission (www.urac.org). URAC's accreditation program is an independent audit to verify that A.D.A.M. follows rigorous standards of quality and accountability. A.D.A.M. is among the first to achieve this important distinction for online health information and services. Learn more about A.D.A.M.'s editorial policy, editorial process and privacy policy. A.D.A.M. is also a founding member of Hi-Ethics and subscribes to the principles of the Health on the Net Foundation (www.hon.ch)

The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- 2013 A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.