Compare Videx vs. Retrovir

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

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Works with other medicines to treat HIV infection.

Videx (didanosine) is not a first-choice treatment for HIV because there are newer medications that work well and are easier to take. However, Videx (didanosine) can be an option if other HIV medications haven't worked for you.

Works with other drugs to treat HIV infection or prevents transmission to your baby.

Retrovir (zidovudine) is not the first choice to treat HIV because of its side effects.

Upsides
  • Videx (didanosine) is available in pill or liquid form.
  • Videx (didanosine) can be used in children 2 weeks of age and older.
  • Videx (didanosine) can be taken either once or twice daily.
  • Retrovir (zidovudine) is safe and effective for children and infants.
  • Retrovir (zidovudine) is available in several single-pill combination tablets so you don't need to take as many pills.
Downsides
  • Videx (didanosine) cannot be taken by itself. It must be used with other HIV medications to treat HIV.
  • People commonly experience side effects such as diarrhea, nerve pain, and nausea when taking Videx (didanosine).
  • Videx (didanosine) should be used with caution if you have liver or kidney issues.
  • Videx (didanosine) shouldn't be taken with allopurinol or ribavirin. If you are taking these medicines, let your doctor know.
  • Retrovir (zidovudine) can cause serious blood, muscle, and liver problems.
  • Many people experience nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, and headache when taking Retrovir (zidovudine).
  • Taking Retrovir (zidovudine) can raise your cholesterol and blood sugar levels.
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Used for
  • HIV infection
  • Prevention of mother-to-child HIV transmission
  • HIV Postexposure prophylaxis (PEP)
Dosage forms
  • Delayed release Pill
  • Liquid
  • Pill
  • Liquid
Price
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Reviews
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Side effects
6possible side effects
  • Diarrhea
    56%
  • Nerve pain
    25%
  • Nausea
    24%
  • Headache
    22%
  • Rash
    14%
  • Vomiting
    14%
See more detailed side effects
12possible side effects
  • Fever
    25%
  • Cough
    15%
  • Skin rashes
    12%
  • Enlarged liver
    11%
  • Enlarged lymph nodes
    9%
  • Nausea and vomiting
    8%
  • Diarrhea
    8%
  • Nasal discharge or congestion
    8%
  • Wheezing
    7%
  • Pain in the ear
    7%
  • Swelling of the mouth
    6%
  • Enlarged spleen
    5%
See more detailed side effects
Risks and risk factors
  • Pancreatitis
    • History of pancreatic issues
    • Alcohol consumption
    • Concomitant use with Zerit (stavudine)
    • Kidney problems
  • Lactic acidosis & severe liver damage
  • Nerve pain
    • Advanced HIV disease
    • History of peripheral neuropathy
    • Taking other medications that also cause peripheral neuropathy
  • Retinal changes
  • Fat redistribution
    • HIV treatment
  • Immune reconstitution syndrome
    • HIV
    • Exposure to other infections
    • Start of a new HIV medication
    • Change in HIV therapy
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Blood and bone marrow problems
    • Advanced HIV
    • Anemia
    • Neutropenia
  • Muscle and kidney damage
    • Extended use of Retrovir (zidovudine)
  • Acid build-up in the blood
    • Liver disease
    • Women
    • Obesity
  • Fat redistribution
    • HIV treatment
  • Immune reconstitution syndrome
    • HIV
    • Exposure to other infections
    • Start of a new HIV medication
    • Change in HIV therapy
See more detailed risks and warnings