Mavyret (glecaprevir/pibrentasvir) is a prescription brand-name medication. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved it to treat certain forms of hepatitis C (hep C), which is a liver infection caused by the hepatitis C virus.

Depending on the type of hepatitis C you have and whether you’ve received any past treatments for it, you’ll typically take Mavyret for 8 to 16 weeks.

Here are some fast facts on Mavyret:

  • Active ingredients: glecaprevir/pibrentasvir
  • Drug class: antiviral
  • Drug form: oral tablet
  • FDA approval year: 2017

Like other drugs, Mavyret can cause side effects. Read on to learn about potential common, mild, and serious side effects. For a general overview of Mavyret, including details about its uses, see this article.

Mavyret can cause certain side effects, some of which are more common than others. These side effects may be temporary, lasting a few days or weeks. But if the side effects last longer than that, bother you, or become severe, be sure to talk with your doctor or pharmacist.

These are just a few of the more common side effects reported by people who took Mavyret in clinical trials:

* For more information about this side effect, see “Side effect specifics” below.

Mild side effects can occur with Mavyret use. This list doesn’t include all possible mild side effects of the drug. For more information, you can refer to Mavyret’s medication guide.

Mild side effects that have been reported with Mavyret include:

* For more information about this side effect, see “Side effect specifics” below.

Side effects from Mavyret usually don’t last long. But if the side effects last longer than a few days or weeks, bother you, or become severe, be sure to talk with your doctor or pharmacist.

Note: After the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves a drug, it tracks and reviews side effects of the medication. If you develop a side effect while taking Mavyret and want to tell the FDA about it, visit MedWatch.

Mavyret may cause serious side effects. But it’s not known to cause side effects that last a long time. The list below may not include all possible serious side effects of the drug. For more information, you can refer to Mavyret’s medication guide.

If you develop serious side effects while taking Mavyret, call your doctor right away. If the side effects seem life threatening or you think you’re having a medical emergency, immediately call 911 or your local emergency number.

Serious side effects* that have been reported include:

* For more information about this side effect, see “Side effect specifics” below.
Mavyret has a boxed warning for this side effect. This is the most serious warning from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). To learn more, see the “Side effect specifics” section below.

Mavyret may cause several side effects. Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about the drug’s side effects.

Does Mavyret interact with any other drugs?

Yes, Mavyret can interact with certain other drugs.

For example, taking warfarin (a blood thinner) and Mavyret together may change the amount of warfarin in your body. This can raise your risk for certain complications from warfarin, such as blood clots or excessive bleeding.

For a detailed list of medications that Mavyret can interact with, refer to this article. You can also ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have questions about Mavyret and drug interactions.

Could I have side effects after stopping Mavyret treatment?

No, there aren’t any known side effects caused by stopping Mavyret treatment.

Mavyret doesn’t cause dependence,* so stopping it shouldn’t make you sick. However, you must not stop taking the drug unless your doctor approves.

It’s also important to note that if you have hepatitis B virus (HBV), using Mavyret could cause the virus to reactivate (cause symptoms). This reactivation could happen after you stop Mavyret treatment, too. Mavyret has a boxed warning about reactivation of hepatitis B (see “Side effect specifics” below for details).

If you have questions about stopping Mavyret treatment, talk with your doctor.

* With dependence, your body needs the drug in order for you to feel normal.

Is hair loss a side effect of Mavyret?

No, hair loss isn’t a known side effect of Mavyret. It wasn’t reported in clinical trials of the drug.

Other drugs used to treat hepatitis C, called interferons, can cause thyroid dysfunction. This can lead to hair thinning or hair loss. But, thyroid dysfunction isn’t a known side effect of Mavyret.

If you’re concerned about hair loss, talk with your doctor. They can discuss ways to manage this.

Learn more about some of the side effects that Mavyret may cause.

Itching

Itching as a side effect of Mavyret has only been reported in people with known liver problems or kidney problems.

Specifically, in clinical trials, itching was a rare side effect reported by:

Itching can also be a symptom of hepatitis C (which Mavyret is used to treat) or liver disease. And, some medications prescribed after a liver or kidney transplant can also cause itching. So it’s not known for sure whether Mavyret actually causes this side effect.

* Compensated means that your liver can still function normally.

What you can do

Before you begin taking Mavyret, be sure to tell your doctor if you have compensated cirrhosis (classified as Child-Pugh class A), severe CKD, or if you’ve received a liver or kidney transplant.

If you experience itching while taking Mavyret, talk with your doctor. They can recommend ways to manage itchiness.

Reactivation of hepatitis B virus

Mavyret has a boxed warning for reactivation of existing hepatitis B virus (HBV). This is a serious warning from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

If you have both HBV and hepatitis C, taking Mavyret can cause HBV to reactivate. This means your HBV may flare up and cause symptoms such as:

  • fatigue (lack of energy)
  • fever
  • lack of appetite
  • pain in the right side of your abdomen (belly)
  • yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes

In rare cases, HBV reactivation can cause liver failure that’s serious or even fatal.

What you can do

Before you start treatment with Mavyret, your doctor will test you for HBV. If your test result is positive, your doctor will likely treat this infection before you start taking Mavyret. Your doctor may also monitor you more closely than usual during your treatment.

If you experience symptoms of HBV reactivation while taking Mavyret, talk with your doctor right away.

Fatigue

It’s possible to experience fatigue (lack of energy) as a side effect of Mavyret. This was one of the more common side effects reported in clinical trials.

What you can do

Keep in mind that most people take Mavyret for 8 to 16 weeks, and fatigue should go away once you stop taking the drug. But if you’re experiencing fatigue that’s concerning or negatively affecting your daily activities, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. They can suggest ways to help reduce this side effect while you’re taking Mavyret.

Allergic reaction

As with most drugs, Mavyret can cause an allergic reaction in some people.

Symptoms can be mild or serious and can include:

  • rash
  • itching
  • flushing (temporary warmth, redness, or deepening of skin color)
  • swelling under your skin, typically in your lips, eyelids, feet, or hands
  • swelling of your mouth, tongue, or throat, which can make it hard to breathe

What you can do

For mild symptoms of an allergic reaction, call your doctor right away. They may recommend ways to ease your symptoms and determine whether you should keep taking Mavyret. But if your symptoms are serious and you think you’re having a medical emergency, immediately call 911 or your local emergency number.

There are several precautions that may affect your ability to use Mavyret, which are described below.

Boxed warning: Reactivation of hepatitis B virus

Mavyret has a boxed warning about reactivation of existing hepatitis B virus (HBV). A boxed warning is a serious warning from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). For details, see the “Side effect specifics” section above.

Other precautions

Be sure to talk with your doctor about your health history before you take Mavyret. This drug may not be the right treatment for you if you have certain medical conditions or other factors that affect your health. The conditions and factors to consider include:

Kidney disease. It’s usually safe for people with kidney disease to take Mavyret. However, people with kidney disease (including people receiving dialysis) may be at risk for additional side effects from Mavyret. These side effects usually aren’t serious and may include itching and weakness. Your doctor may monitor you more closely for side effects while you’re taking Mavyret if you have kidney disease.

Liver disease. Mavyret may not be safe for you to take if you have liver disease. It depends on the severity of your condition. If you have moderate or severe liver disease, you shouldn’t take Mavyret. You also shouldn’t take Mavyret if you’ve ever had decompensated liver disease (meaning that your liver can no longer function normally). Doing so can rarely lead to serious or even fatal liver failure.

Some people with mild liver problems may be able to take Mavyret but may be at risk for additional side effects. These include itching and weakness. Be sure to talk with your doctor about any liver problems you have or have had in the past before you take Mavyret.

Kidney transplant or liver transplant. If you’ve received a kidney transplant or liver transplant, Mavyret is generally considered safe for you to take. But, you may be at risk for additional side effects of the drug, such as itching and weakness. You may also need a different dosage of Mavyret than usual. Make sure to talk with your doctor if you’ve had a kidney or liver transplant before you begin taking Mavyret.

Use of the drugs atazanavir or rifampin. You should not use Mavyret if you’re taking the HIV drug atazanavir (Reyataz) or the antibiotic rifampin. These medications can change the amount of Mavyret in your body. This can make Mavyret less effective or potentially cause dangerous side effects. Make sure your doctor knows about all the medications you take before you start taking Mavyret.

Allergic reaction. You shouldn’t take Mavyret If you’ve ever had an allergic reaction to Mavyret or any of its ingredients. Talk with your doctor about which other treatments are better choices for you.

Alcohol use with Mavyret

There aren’t any known interactions between alcohol and Mavyret. But, you shouldn’t drink alcohol if you have hepatitis C virus (HCV), which Mavyret is used to treat. Alcohol worsens HCV and can potentially lead to cirrhosis (severe scar tissue buildup) in your liver.

Talk with your doctor if you have questions about alcohol use while taking Mavyret.

Pregnancy and breastfeeding while taking Mavyret

It’s not known whether it’s safe to take Mavyret while pregnant or while breastfeeding. Before you start taking Mavyret, talk with your doctor if you’re pregnant, breastfeeding, or planning to become pregnant or breastfeed. They can help determine the best treatment for your HCV.

Side effects of Mavyret are usually mild and don’t require medical attention. And, many people taking the medication in clinical trials didn’t report side effects. However, some people may experience serious side effects from taking Mavyret.

You should talk with your doctor if you experience symptoms of:

These serious side effects could be serious and require medical attention. You should also tell your doctor if you become pregnant while taking Mavyret.

If you’d like to learn more about Mavyret, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. They can help answer any questions you have about side effects from taking the drug.

Besides talking with your doctor, you can do some research on your own. These articles might help:

  • More information on Mavyret. For details on other aspects of Mavyret, refer to this article.
  • Drug comparison. To learn how Mavyret compares with Epclusa, read this article.
  • A look at hepatitis C. For details on Mavyret and hepatitis C, see this article.

Disclaimer: Medical News Today has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.