Valtrex, common uses
Valtrex is indicated for the treatment of herpes zoster (shingles), genital herpes and cold sores (herpes labialis).
Valtrex (valacyclovir hydrochloride) is the hydrochloride salt of L-valyl ester of the antiviral drug acyclovir.
Valtrex tablets are for oral administration. Each tablet contains valacyclovir hydrochloride equivalent to 500 mg and 1000 mg valacyclovir, respectively.
Valtrex may be taken without regard to meals.
The recommended dosage of Valtrex for the treatment of herpes zoster is 1 gram orally 3 times daily for 7 days. Therapy should be initiated at the earliest sign or symptom of herpes zoster and is most effective when started within 48 hours of the onset of zoster rash.
The recommended dosage of Valtrex for treatment of initial genital herpes is 1 gram twice daily for 10 days.
The recommended dosage of Valtrex for the treatment of recurrent genital herpes is 500 mg twice daily for 3 days.
If medical management of a genital herpes recurrence is indicated, initiate therapy at the first sign or symptom of an episode. There are no data on the effectiveness of treatment with Valtrex when initiated more than 24 hours after the onset of signs or symptoms.
The recommended dosage of Valtrex for chronic suppressive therapy of recurrent genital herpes is 1 gram once daily. In patients with a history of 9 or fewer recurrences per year, an alternative dose is 500 mg once daily. The safety and efficacy of therapy with Valtrex beyond 1 year have not been established.
The recommended dosage of Valtrex for the treatment of cold sores is 2 grams twice daily for 1 day taken about 12 hours apart. Therapy should be initiated at the earliest symptom of a cold sore (e.g., tingling, itching, or burning).
In individuals with reduced renal function, reduction in dosage is recommended.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as remembered if it is within an hour or so. If you do not remember until later, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not "double-up" the dose to catch up.
Valtrex is not a cure for genital herpes. There are no data evaluating whether Valtrex will prevent transmission of infection to others. Because genital herpes is a sexually transmitted disease, individuals should avoid contact with lesions or intercourse when lesions and/or symptoms are present to avoid infecting partners. Genital herpes can also be transmitted in the absence of symptoms through asymptomatic viral shedding. If medical management of a genital herpes recurrence is indicated, be advised to initiate therapy at the first sign or symptom of an episode.
Valtrex, possible side effects
The most frequently observed side effects of Valtrex include nausea, headache, vomiting, dizziness and abdominal pain.
Less frequent side effects include facial edema, hypertension, tachycardia, acute hypersensitivity reactions, aggressive behavior, agitation, ataxia, coma, confusion, dysarthria, encephalopathy, mania and psychosis.
If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor.
If overdose of Valtrex is suspected, contact your local poison control center or emergency room immediately.
Valtrex, additional information
Keep Valtrex in a tightly closed container and out of reach of children. Store Valtrex at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom).
The above information is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of your physician, or other healthcare professional. It should not be construed to indicate that use of Valtrex is safe, appropriate, or effective for you.
Consult your health care professional before you