Entecavir is often prescribed to help manage Hepatitis B Virus, or HBV, in people who have this chronic disease. This medication slows the spread of the virus through the body, although it does not cure it or stop it from spreading to others. The medication is taken orally 2 hours after one meal and 2 hours before the next meal.
This medication can cause liver damage in some people that leads to lactic acidosis, a potentially life-threatening condition where lactic acid builds up in the blood. People who have liver disease other than HBV should not take this medication. Patients should contact their doctors immediately if they have symptoms of liver disease such as severe stomach pain, jaundice, nausea and vomiting, or brown urine and tarry, black stools.
Abruptly withdrawing from this medication can cause HBV symptoms to get worse.
If you have HIV, this medication may increase your risk of HIV-related infections or make those infections harder to treat.