Generic name: Nevirapine.

Viramune is a non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NNRTI) of HIV. It works by inhibiting the reverse transcriptase (RT) enzyme necessary for the reproduction of HIV in blood cells. Used in combination with other anti-HIV drugs for people who do not respond to single-drug therapy.

Quick Facts About Viramune


Used to slow the progress of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), which can lead to acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS).

Viramune Dosage

Take exactly as prescribed, with or without food. Do not share Viramune, and do not increase prescribed dose without consulting your doctor.

  • Usual adult dose: initially — 200 milligrams once per day for 14 days. Doctor will increase dose to 200 milligrams twice per day.
  • Usual child dose: not generally prescribed for children.
  • Missed dose: take as soon as possible, unless almost time for next dose. In that case, do not take missed dose; go back to regular schedule. Do not double doses.

Viramune Side Effects

Overdose symptoms:

none reported; however, if you suspect an overdose, immediately seek medicai attention.

More common side effects: fever, headache, nausea, rash.

Less common Viramune side effects: abdominal pain, diarrhea, liver irritation, mouth sores, muscle pain, “pins and needles”.


Taking Viramune with certain drugs could be dangerous or life-threatening. Do not combine with the protease inhibitors used to treat HIV, Crixivan, Invirase, and Norvir.

Inform your doctor before combining Viramune with:

enzyme inducers such as carbamazepine (Tegretol) or rifampin (Rifadin or Rimactane); hormonal contraceptives (implants or pills); loratadine (Claritin); rifabutin (Mycobutin).

No known food/other substance interactions. 

Special Cautions

If pregnant or planning to become pregnant, inform your doctor immediately. Do not breastfeed; HIV appears in breast milk and could affect a nursing infant.

No special precautions apply to seniors.

Not generally prescribed for children.

  • If rash appears, especially if severe or accompanied by fever, blisters, mouth sores, red eyes, swelling, muscle or joint aches, or fatigue, contact your doctor immediately; this could be a potentially life-threatening situation.
  • Long-term effects of medication are not known. Since the HIV virus remains in the body, risk is still present for complications, including opportunistic infections such as pneumonia, tuberculosis, and fungal infection. It is important to remain under the care of a doctor and go to follow-up appointments.
  • Inform your doctor before treatment if you have liver disease (especially cirrhosis) or diabetes.
  • Does not reduce risk of transmitting HIV to others through sexual contact or blood contamination. Always use condoms and never share needles or equipment with other people.

Note: provides accurate and independent information prescription pills, over-the-counter medicines and natural products. This material is provided for educational purposes only and is not intended for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. If you have questions about  dosage, or Viramune side effects, please contact your healthcare provider