STD Home > More Info on Raltegravir Indications

How Does Raltegravir Work?

Raltegravir works by blocking a process that the HIV virus needs in order to multiply. Like other viruses, HIV must use a person's own cells to reproduce. Once the virus makes copies of its DNA (its genetic material), it inserts the viral DNA into the DNA of the infected human cell. As a result, it can use the human cell's own machinery to make new copies of the virus.
 
Raltegravir inhibits an enzyme called integrase. Integrase is necessary for the viral DNA to be inserted into the human DNA. By inhibiting integrase, raltegravir helps to prevent the virus from making new copies of itself. It is important to remember, however, that the medication is not a cure for HIV or AIDS.
 

Is Raltegravir Used in Children?

Raltegravir is approved for use in children as young as four weeks of age who weigh at least 6.6 pounds. Talk with your child's healthcare provider about the benefits and risks of using the drug in children.
 

Is Raltegravir Used for Off-Label Reasons?

On occasion, your healthcare provider may recommend raltegravir for treating something other than HIV infection and AIDS. This is called an "off-label" use. At this time, there are no universally accepted off-label raltegravir uses.
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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