Understanding Zidovudine Oral Solution USP 50mg/5ml

Zidovudine Oral Solution USP 50mg/5ml is a medication used in the treatment of HIV infection. This article provides essential information about this medication, focusing on its indications and dosage.

What is Zidovudine Oral Solution USP and what is it used for?

Zidovudine Oral Solution USP 50mg/5ml contains an active ingredient known as zidovudine and belongs to a group of antiviral medicines called nucleoside analogue reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTIs). These medicines are used to treat Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection. This solution serves two primary purposes:

  • In Antiretroviral Combination Therapy for Children: It is used to treat HIV infection in children.
  • Prevention of Mother-to-Child Transmission: It is used in newborns and infants to prevent the transmission of HIV from mother to child.

In therapy, Zidovudine helps reduce the amount of the virus in the child’s body, keeping it at a low level. It also increases CD4 cell counts, which are essential for fighting infections. The effectiveness of the treatment is closely monitored by healthcare providers.

It’s important to note that while Zidovudine can improve the child’s condition, it is not a cure for HIV infection. Therefore, necessary precautions must still be taken to prevent the transmission of the virus to others.

Questions to Consider Before Taking Zidovudine Oral Solution

Before using Zidovudine Oral Solution, you should address several key considerations:

  • Allergic Reactions: Ensure your child is not allergic to zidovudine or any of the other ingredients.
  • Blood Disorders: If your child has a very low red blood cell count or white blood cell count, this medication should not be used.

Furthermore, it’s essential to communicate any pre-existing liver disease, kidney disease, or other relevant health conditions with your healthcare provider.

Potential Side Effects and Considerations

Zidovudine treatment may lead to various side effects, including:

  • Anaemia and Low White Blood Cell Count: Commonly reported in patients with advanced HIV infection.
  • Lactic Acidosis: A rare but severe side effect, more common in women and patients with liver disease.
  • Liver Disease: Patients with chronic hepatitis B or C need close monitoring.
  • Reactivation of Immune System: Antiviral therapy can lead to old infections flaring up; be vigilant for signs of inflammation.
  • Fat Distribution: Zidovudine may cause loss of body fat, especially in certain areas.
  • Bone Problems: A bone disease called osteonecrosis may develop in some patients.
  • Other Infections: While Zidovudine helps control HIV, other infections may still occur.

It’s crucial to maintain regular contact with your child’s healthcare provider, and never discontinue the medication without consulting them.

Dosage Information

The recommended dosages vary by age and condition:

  • Adults: Typical doses are 500-600 mg/day in two or three divided doses.
  • Children (3 months – 12 years): Dosage ranges from 360 to 480 mg/m2 per day, divided into 3 or 4 doses. Maximum dosage should not exceed 200 mg every 6 hours.
  • Children (<3 months): Specific dosage recommendations are not available.

For preventing maternal-fetal transmission, a specific regimen is followed for pregnant women and newborns.

Please note that dose adjustments may be necessary in cases of haematological adverse reactions, renal impairment, hepatic impairment, and elderly patients.

How to Administer Zidovudine Oral Solution

Zidovudine Oral Solution should be taken orally. A dosing syringe is provided with the medication for accurate measurement. The solution contains 10 mg of zidovudine per 1 ml.

  1. Remove the bottle cap and firmly push the plastic adapter into the neck of the bottle.
  2. Insert the syringe into the adapter.
  3. Turn the bottle upside down and fill the syringe with the prescribed dose.
  4. Place the syringe in your child’s mouth, against the inside of the cheek. Slowly push the plunger, allowing time to swallow.
  5. Remove the syringe from the adapter, wash it thoroughly, and let it dry completely.

In case of missing a dose, follow the recommended guidelines in the information provided.

Storage and Expiry

Keep Zidovudine Oral Solution below 30°C and do not use it after the expiry date mentioned on the container. Properly dispose of unused medication as instructed by your pharmacist to protect the environment.


Zidovudine Oral Solution USP 50mg/5ml is a vital component of HIV treatment, primarily used in children. It is essential to adhere to the prescribed dosages, monitor for side effects, and maintain open communication with your healthcare provider to ensure the best possible management of HIV infection.

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