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Acyclovir Uses & Dosage

Generic Name: Acyclovir
Brands Names: Sitavig, Zovirax

Price Range: $0.68 – $2.95
Dosage: 200mg / 400mg / 800mg

What is Zovirax

Zovirax (Acyclovir) is a prescription only medication demonstrating effectiveness for treating single time or repeated occurrences of conditions such as herpes zoster, shingles, varicella, cold sores, encephalitis, chickenpox, and outbreaks of genital herpes. This medication demonstrates an impressive ability to reduce pain and speed healing time for the aforementioned conditions.

Zovirax is also widely prescribed for the prevention of genital herpes outbreaks for those carrying this virus. Zovirax is considered a synthetic nucleoside analog medication (i.e., antiviral) that works to prevent the spread of the herpes virus from one area to other parts of the body. However, it is important to note that Zovirax does not work by curing the herpes virus, nor does it prevent genital herpes from passing from one person to the next. The main purpose of this medication is to stop the growth of herpes infections.

Zovirax is commonly prescribed for treating herpes infections in areas of the nose, eyes, mouth, and skin. This is in reference to patients diagnosed with a human immunodeficiency virus. Additionally, Acyclovir is effective for the treatment of oral hairy leukoplakia and eczema herpeticum. The latter is a skin disease caused by the herpes virus.

As previously discussed, Zovirax is an effective medication used to stop the herpes virus from multiplying. Consequently, the main action of this medication does an impressive job in eliminating the severity of the disease and prevents spreading.

Acyclovir medication is available in different forms and dosages, which includes tablets (400 mg strength), solution for injection, and cream. Depending on the type of the herpes virus, a patient may choose to take capsules, liquid suspension, and/or pills. These are all oral forms of Acyclovir, which should be taken from two to five times per day according to the prescription written by a treating physician. A standard course of treatment may last from five to ten days.

In most instances, it is recommended to start Acyclovir treatment as soon as any signs of herpes infection are detected. In contrast, for patients suffering from genital herpes, outbreaks can be prevented by using Acyclovir for an entire year. In such cases, Acyclovir can be taken from two to five times per day.

The herpes virus and associated outbreaks are infectious even while being treated. Therefore, irrespective of whether Acyclovir treatment is on-going, never let areas of outbreak come into contact with areas of the body for those who do not have herpes.

The consumption of Acyclovir while pregnant or breastfeeding is strictly forbidden. The active ingredient in Acyclovir can readily into breast milk and can seriously harm infants. In these aforementioned cases, doctors may prescribe an alternative medication.

Consistent with other medications, Acyclovir is associated with causing potential side effects. Some of these can be mild, whereas others are more serious. In most instances where side effects appear while taking Acyclovir, these have been allergic reactions. However, use of Acyclovir may also cause harm to the liver as well as causing diarrhea, nausea, headaches or abdominal pains, rashes and hives, phlebitis or inflammation at the injection site, abdominal pains and vomiting, and/or raised transaminase levels.

Acyclovir has been registered as demonstrating contraindicated interactions with over thirty diverse types of medications (usually moderate severity). Therefore, prior to beginning a course of treatment with Acyclovir, it is important to inform a doctor and pharmacist of all current medications that are being used. Acyclovir treatment should never be initiated or stopped unless instructed by a doctor. The prescribed dose should never be altered without first consulting a doctor. When taking Acyclovir, it is important to always strictly adhere to the directions outlined in the prescription provided by a doctor.

It is also important that the drug information label be read prior to taking Acyclovir to identify whether there may be ingredients, which may cause an allergic reaction. At all costs, an overdose of Acyclovir should be avoided. This may be fraught with serious consequences. An overdose of Acyclovir may lead to kidney dysfunction. The following are the primary symptoms indicating an Acyclovir overdose: seizures, agitation, loss of consciousness, extreme sleepiness, and/or kidney failure.

Zovirax tablets and capsules should be taken with a full glass of water. During the entire course of treatment, it is recommended that patients consume plenty of water. This helps the kidneys work properly. There are no strict rules as to whether Acyclovir should or should not be taken with food. However, if the stomach becomes upset while taking Acyclovir, a doctor may recommend taking this medication with food, which should alleviate stomach discomfort.

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Zovirax reviews

Annabel Annabel avatar

I am 22 years old. This herpes virus pisses me off! It first appeared when I was only a child as I was attending school for the first time. To date, this virus reappears every time my immune system becomes weak. The blisters are localized on my face and lips. I even have scars on my face because of these virus outbreaks. While these scars are not very noticeable, they are still there. I have tried hospital treatments with various drugs, and even some herbal therapies. I have tried everything. My mom even stopped treating me. However, I read on the Internet that acyclovir is effective and the reviews of this medication are also good. I decided to use Zovirax and spread it on the blistered areas on my face. After a couple of hours, there was clearly an effect. My herpes stopped growing.


Sara Sara avatar

Herpes is an unpleasant illness. It lives in everyone, but does not always appear. This type of herpes mostly appears when you have a weakened immune system. I have experience herpes outbreaks once or twice a year, but always unexpectedly. Zovirax really helps to treat inflammation, so that my lip does not grow huge. As far as I know, any antiviral drug should be used immediately, or at least within the first few hours of outbreak for a better effect.

Ann Ann avatar

I experienced a sudden onset of cold sores with a new one appearing every day. I am on immunosuppressants so my body cannot fight the herpes virus on its own. After 5 days of outbreaks, I went to my doctor. Acyclovir was amazing, and within 24-48 hours my blisters curled. The swelling and redness were also lessened. I am on 400 mg 3x a day for 10 days. I am currently on day 6. During the first few days, I would feel numb (not dizzy) for a few hours after each dose, but this side effect is now gone. My doctor supplied me with 2 refills for the next time I feel the onset of a cold sore coming, which will help me begin treatment immediately.

Angela Angela avatar

I have used a limited dose of Acyclovir every day for 9 years without any outbreaks. Acyclovir 400 mg pills twice a day will stop an outbreak. The itching will usually stop within 12 hours after the first dose. I have not had to take Acyclovir for more than two days. I have also not experienced any side effects from this medicine.

Joe Joe avatar

I used to have cold sores all the time when I was a child. This was due to exposure to too much cold or when too much heat. Finally, I found a doctor who gave me a prescription (a few years ago, I am an adult now) for Zovirax 200 mg 5x a day for 5 days. I have never had to take the medication for more than 2-3 days. I am very grateful for this medication.