What Is Stribild Used For?
Stribild is an HIV drug containing the antiretroviral medicines elvitegravir, cobicistat, emtricitabine, and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF). Created by Gilead Sciences, it was approved by the FDA on August 27th, 2012 as an all-in-one HIV treatment pill.
Despite its effectiveness, Stribild comes with a high price tag and many health risks, including serious kidney and bone problems. Some Stribild users are now filing lawsuits to compensate them for injuries Gilead allegedly could have avoided by using a safer alternative to a TDF-containing medication.
Who Can Take Stribild?
Stribild is typically prescribed to people who are at least 12 years old and have not received anti-HIV medicines before.
Anyone considering a new medication or stopping an existing medication should consult their doctor for medical advice.
- Gilead Sciences created Stribild as a single-pill HIV treatment regimen.
- Stribild can cost more than $3,500 a month.
- Stribild combines four HIV medications: elvitegravir, cobicistat, emtricitabine, and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF).
- While all TDF drugs may harm patients’ kidneys and bones, some lawsuits have argued that Stribild is “even more toxic” than Gilead’s other drugs.
Stribild Side Effects
Stribild’s most common side effects are nausea and diarrhea. However, Stribild has more serious side effects, including kidney and bone issues, lactic acidosis, and worsening Hepatitis B in patients who stop taking Stribild.
- Acute Kidney Injury (AKI): AKI is the sudden loss of kidney function — a condition that, if not quickly treated, may permanently damage the kidneys or even cause death.
- Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD): When the kidneys slowly lose their ability to function properly, the condition is called CKD. Although CKD often has no symptoms until its later stages, it can lead to renal (kidney) failure.
- End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD): During ESRD, the last stage of CKD, the kidneys cannot filter blood. Without dialysis or a kidney transplant, ESRD can be fatal.
- Renal insufficiency/impairment: Renal insufficiency happens when the kidneys do not function as well as they should.
- Fanconi syndrome: This syndrome causes nutritional and electrolyte loss when the kidneys fail to absorb certain substances into the bloodstream properly.
- Osteoporosis: Osteoporosis is the condition of having weak, brittle bones that break very easily. Patients may also suffer from back pain, loss of height, and a stooped posture.
- Bone density loss: Bone density causes bones to become thinner and more fragile. Osteoporosis is caused by extreme bone density loss.
- Bone breaks/fractures: Bone density loss increases the risk of bone fractures — painful breaks in the bone.
- Tooth loss: Bone and mineral loss may extend to the teeth and jawbone, leading to tooth loss.
Many victims of Stribild’s more severe side effects have argued that Gilead not only withheld safer versions of their HIV drugs to maximize profit — they also downplayed the seriousness of these drugs’ potential side effects in the United States.
Stribild FDA Approval
Stribild was approved for sale by the FDA on August 27th, 2012.
According to recent lawsuits filed against Gilead Sciences, Gilead had more than 10 years of evidence that TDF damaged patients’ kidneys and bones by the time it applied for FDA approval of Stribild.
Stribild has a very high price tag. Depending on pharmacy and insurance, costs can range from $3,000 to $3,700 per month.
The lawsuits also claim Gilead discovered a safer TDF alternative, tenofovir alafenamide fumarate (TAF) before it even gained FDA approval to market TDF under the brand name Viread in 2001.
Stribild Legal Action
Gilead’s once-a-day HIV drug, Stribild, can be a convenient and effective way to manage HIV. However, it may cause serious injuries to the kidneys and bones.
Because of this, Stribild has been named in several lawsuits in which plaintiffs accused Gilead Sciences of causing unnecessary harm to HIV drug users by withholding its TDF alternative, TAF.
Although nothing can reverse the harm and pain caused by irresponsible companies, taking legal action may help those affected receive financial compensation for their suffering and medical treatments.
Pursuing a lawsuit can be intimidating and overwhelming, but if you have been harmed by taking Stribild or another TDF drug, help is available to you.