Generic name: Cabotegravir and rilpivirine is the name of the drug’s generic form.
Dosage form: long-acting intramuscular solution (200 mg–300 mg/mL)
Drug Class: Antiviral mixtures are a type of drug.

What’s Cabenuva?

Cabenuva is an injection given once a month that contains cabotegravir and rilpivirine. It can be used to replace an HIV-1 treatment regimen in adults and children over 12 who weigh at least 77 pounds (35 kg) and meet certain requirements.

HIV-1 is the virus that can cause AIDS, which is short for acquired immune deficiency syndrome.

Cabenuva is a prescription drug that is used to treat HIV without any other antiviral drugs. It’s not a way to get rid of HIV or AIDS.


Should not be given to people who have been allergic to cabotegravir, rilpivirine, or any of the inactive ingredients in the syringe kit in the past.

Tell your doctor about any new medicines you start taking or any you stop taking. There are many ways that drugs can combine, and some drugs can make Cabenuva less effective, so they shouldn’t be used together.

Serious responses have happened when the rilpivirine component was injected. Tell your doctor if the place where you got the shot hurts a lot, swells up, or turns red.

Cabotegravir and rilpivirine shots have been linked to liver damage, so your doctor will need to keep an eye on your liver function tests.

Depression has been said to happen as well. Talk to your doctor if your mood changes in any way.

Even though cabotegravir or rilpivirine can stay in your bloodstream for up to 12 months after your last injection, you should start a new treatment plan no later than 1 month after your last injection if you stop taking Cabenuva or if virological failure is suspected.

How do you give Cabenuva?

Before giving you injections of Cabenuva, your doctor will make sure you can handle the main ingredients, which are cabotegravir and rilpivirine. You will take cabotegravir and rilpivirine once a day with a meal for at least 28 days before your first dose. This “lead-in dose” will help you figure out if it’s safe to take both drugs at the same time.

  • On the last day you take the pills, you will get your first dose of this medicine through an injection. Cabenuva is shot once a month into the buttock muscle. This medicine will be given to you as two different injections in the same muscle, 2 cm apart, or as one injection in each buttock.
  • After each shot, you will be closely watched for about 10 minutes to make sure you don’t have a bad response.
  • Your HIV medicine will work best if you get your shots at the right times. Your doctor may give you a “target treatment date” on a chart to help you stay on track. If you need to, you can get an injection up to 7 days before or after your goal date, if needed.
  • You have to stay under a doctor’s care while getting your shots. To get the most out of it, stick to the plan. Skipping doses can make you more likely to develop HIV that is resistant to treatment.
  • If you stop taking Cabenuva, you will need to start taking other HIV medicines within a month to keep your HIV from becoming immune. Call your doctor right away to talk about your choices for treatment.
  • Your health will need to be checked often. Cabenuva can have affects on your body that last for up to a year after you’ve stopped taking it. After you stop taking this medicine, you may still need tests for a short time.

Before you take this drug,

To make sure that the Cabenuva injection kit is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have ever had:

  • a skin rash or an allergic reaction after taking a medicine that contains cabotegravir or rilpivirine;
  • liver disease, such as hepatitis B or C;
  • a mental illness; or
  • long QT syndrome (either in yourself or a family member).

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, want to get pregnant, or are nursing.


Children Can’t use Cabenuva if they are younger than 12 or weigh less than 77 pounds (35 kilogrammes).


There isn’t much known about using Cabenuva while pregnant, and cabotegravir and rilpivirine can be found in the body’s bloodstream for up to a year or more after the shots stop. If you want to get pregnant, talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits. Keep in mind that HIV can be passed on to your baby if the virus is not under control during pregnancy.

If you get pregnant by accident, there is a pregnancy exposure register that keeps track of what happens to babies born to women who were given cabotegravir or rilpivirine while they were pregnant. By calling the Antiretroviral Pregnancy Registry (APR) at 1-800-258-4263, your doctor can sign you up.


A baby shouldn’t be breastfed by a woman with HIV or AIDS. Even if your baby doesn’t have HIV at birth, it may get it from your breast milk.

What will happen if I don’t take a dose?

If you miss your visit for a Cabenuva shot, call your doctor to find out what to do.

If you miss an injection by more than 7 days, you may need to take cabotegravir and rilpivirine tablets every day until your next monthly shot is due. About one month after your last shot, you should start taking the pills. If needed, tablets can be taken every day instead of shots for up to two months straight.

If you miss an injection by more than 7 days and haven’t started taking the medicine in pill form, your doctor may need to decide if Cabenuva is the best treatment for you.

What happens if I overdose?

Get help from a doctor right away or call 1-800-222-1222 to reach the Poison Help line.

What shouldn’t I do when I use Cabenuva?

Cabenuva is an all-in-one cure for HIV. If your doctor doesn’t tell you to, don’t take any other HIV medicines.

Do not have sex without protection or share toothbrushes or razors. Talk to your doctor about safe ways to avoid passing on HIV during sexual activity. Even if you are healthy, you should never share drugs or needles.

What side affects does Cabenuva have?

Get emergency medical help if you have hives, fever, tiredness, body aches, feeling sick, sores or blisters in your mouth, red or swollen eyes, trouble breathing, or swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

A few minutes after a shot, some side effects may start to happen. Tell your carer if you feel nervous, hot, dizzy, sweaty, or if your stomach hurts or your mouth goes numb.

Call your doctor right away if:

  • Changes in mood or behaviour that are out of the ordinary;
  • Suicidal thoughts or actions
  • Liver problems can cause loss of hunger, nausea, vomiting, pain in the upper right side of the stomach, itching, dark urine, stools that look like clay, and jaundice, which is when the skin or eyes turn yellow.

Common Cabenuva side effects may include:

  • reactions at the injection site, such as pain, redness, swelling, itching, bruising, warmth, or a hard lump;
  • dizziness;
  • fever;
  • feeling tired;
  • headache;
  • Nausea
  • Pain in your bones, muscles, or joints
  • Rash
  • Trouble sleeping.

This isn’t a full list of all possible side effects, and there may be others. You should talk to your doctor about any side effects. You can call 1-800-FDA-1088 to tell the FDA about side affects.

What effects will other drugs have on Cabenuva?

Do not take Cabenuva with other HIV meds.

How well the shots work can be affected by other medicines. Examples include: • apalutamide • certain antibiotics – clarithromycin, erythromycin, or rifampin

  • dexamethasone
  • enzalutamide
  • medications with a known risk of Torsade de Pointes, such as droperidol or disopyramide
  • methadone
  • seizure medications, such as carbamazepine, oxcarbazepine, phenobarbital, phenytoin, or primidone
  • St. John’s wort
  • Viekira Pak (dasabuvir, ombitasvir, paritaprevir, and ritonavir).

Medicines that increase the activity of uridine diphosphate glucuronosyltransferase (UGT)1A1 or cytochrome P450 (CYP)3A4 may also lower the amount of cabotegravir and rilpivirine in the blood.

Cabenuva stays in your body for at least a year. If you decide to stop taking it, your doctor will tell you how to take any other drugs for the first year after your last dose.

This list doesn’t have everything. A lot of other medicines, such as prescription and over-the-counter drugs, vitamins, and herbal items, may interact with atorvastatin. This medicine guide does not list all of the possible drug interactions.


Each vial of cabotegravir and rilpivirine in the Cabenuva injection kit is for a single dose. There are two strengths of kit.

Each dose kit also has two syringes, two labels for the syringes, two vial adapters, and two 23-gauge, 1.5-inch needles for intramuscular injection. The stoppers on the vials are not made from latex made from natural rubber.

The Cabenuva 400/600mg kit has:


  • One single-dose bottle of cabotegravir extended-release injectable suspension 400 mg/2 mL (200 mg/mL)
  • One single-dose tube of 600 mg/2 mL (300 mg/mL) of rilpivirine extended-release injectable suspension.

The Cabenuva 600/900mg kit has:


  • One single-dose bottle of cabotegravir extended-release injectable suspension 600 mg/3 mL (200 mg/mL)
  • One single-dose vial of a 900 mg/3 mL (300 mg/mL) extended-release injection suspension of rilpivirine.


The Cabenuva kits should be kept in the fridge at 2°C to 8°C (36°F to 46°F) until they are ready to be used. Do not die.

Bring the bottles to room temperature (no more than 25°C [77°F]) before giving them out. If they aren’t used in 6 hours, they have to be thrown away.

Draw each solution into its own syringe and give it as soon as you can. Throw away any medicine, needles, or syringes that haven’t been used in the last 2 hours.


ViiV Healthcare.

Popular FAQ

Can you give yourself Cabenuva?

No, Cabenuva is a long-acting drug that is given by your doctor as two different injections (cabotegravir and rilpivirine) into your buttock muscles once a month OR every other month. Cabenuva is used to treat HIV-1 in people who are at least 12 years old and weigh at least 35 kg (77 lbs).

Can HIV be treated with Cabenuva?

Yes, Cabenuva (cabotegravir and rilpivirine) is a shot that works for a long time. It is used to treat HIV-1 infection, but it does not prevent it. Cabotegravir is an antiviral integrase strand transfer inhibitor (INSTI), while rilpivirine is a non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NNRTI). With these medicines, HIV can’t grow in your body. Apretude is a brand name for an injection that only has cabotegravir in it. It is used as a long-acting HIV prevention (PrEP) shot.

Where do you put Cabenuva?

Cabenuva is given as an injection in the buttocks. The Cabenuva injection kit has two different vials, each with a single dose. The cabotegravir is in one bottle and the rilpivirine is in the other. One buttock gets an injection of cabotegravir, and the other gets an injection of rilpivirine.

Who makes Cabenuva?

ViiV Healthcare is the company that makes Cabenuva. For more information in the US, call 1-844-588-3288 (toll-free) Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. Eastern Time (ET) or visit the ViiV website.

For more details,

Talk to your doctor or other healthcare source to make sure that the information on this page applies to your situation.


About the Author: Daniel