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The drug known by its generic name, Acyclovir, belongs to the synthetic nucleoside analogues group of drugs used primarily to treat particular viral infections. Manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline and marketed as Zovirax, it comes in liquid, capsule and tablet forms. But acyclovir remains the oldest form of treatment for the herpes simplex 1 and simplex 2 viruses, or cold sores and genital herpes, which cause infections in those afflicted with HIV.
When a virus takes over a living cell and reproduces itself, at the host cell’s expense, acyclovir is converted into an activated form by the same virus, enabling it to use acyclovir’s active form instead of the nucleoside which it normally uses in the manufacture of DNA; DNA is a crucial element in the replication of a virus. Simply put, cells which have been virally infected tend to absorb more of the acyclovir than their normal counterparts; therefore there is more conversion of it into active forms, a condition which helps prolong the anti-viral activity. Acyclovir is not a curative treatment for viral infections but it can shorten the duration of the infections and lessen their possibility of developing into more serious medical conditions. In initial cases of genital herpes, acyclovir helps reduce lesions and decreases severity and frequency of infections which are recurrent. Depending on the severity of the genital herpes infection of an individual who has it for the first time, an oral dosage of acyclovir at 400mg thrice a day has been recommended by the CDCP or Center for Disease Control and Prevention; this dosage has to be ingested between seven and ten days. The patient may then choose to have daily or episodic therapy; the former is also known as suppressive therapy.
Patients who have existing conditions of HIV should take 400mg of oral acyclovir thrice a day between five and ten days.
While there haven’t been sufficient clinical studies on the use of acyclovir by pregnant women and subsequent adverse effects, nursing women are cautioned against ingesting acyclovir since this can be transferred to an infant as an excretion in breast milk.
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Just because you carry the virus doesn’t mean it will ever manifest, but if it does, it weakens the immune system and needs to be handled.
Because there is no herpes treatment, oral or genital, your doctor will put you through a battery of tests to confirm the diagnosis, especially if no sores are present at the time of your visit.
They won’t tell you about the natural treatments that can help prevent an outbreak, or shorten an outbreak occurrence.
The fact is, you’ll leave the doctor’s office with a prescription for anti-viral medications to help keep the virus from manifesting. OverviewHerpes simplex, a common viral disease, is caused by two strains of the herpes simplex virus (HSV).
The initial infection (primary stage) of oral herpes is generally asymptomatic and is acquired through person to person contact such as kissing. The stages of genital herpes are very similar to oral herpes with an initial stage that manifests with few symptoms and is less contagious.


For both genital and oral herpes, the dormancy period involves the virus "resting" within the nervous tissue around the initially infected area. Herpes is commonly diagnosed based upon the symptoms described above paired with frequent recurrence in the same area. Once diagnosed with herpes, managing the disease includes caring for sores during outbreaks as well as preventing their recurrence.
Since genital and oral herpes are extremely common in the United States, with an estimate of 45 million people or one out of every five infected, there are many places to turn for support. Viral infections or exacerbations are still the most difficult problem in medicine to date.
Acyclovir is a prescriptive medication that prevents the division and multiplication of viruses responsible for said infections.
When the active acyclovir is incorporated into a new virus in the DNA, production of DNA stops. Taking acyclovir for treatment of genital herpes can help reduce its severity or prevent it from further recurrences.
The latter is experienced as a painful rash which could develop several years after having had chicken pox with the reactivation of the virus. For shingles, acyclovir helps reduce pain, shorten the duration for healing, and halts the formation of more lesions and further spread of the virus. Acyclovir may be used intravenously for patients who have severe cases of genital herpes as well as those whose immune systems are compromised. Those who elected episodic therapy can choose to take acyclovir orally at 400mg thrice daily for a total of five days, 800mg thrice daily for a total of two days or 800mg twice a day for a total of five days. For suppressive therapy, the CDCP recommends 400mg of oral acyclovir twice daily; those who are already infected with HIV should take it between 400mg and 800mg two or three times daily. In the United States alone, 50 to 80% of adults carry oral herpes, and 20% (more than 50 million people) carry genital herpes.
These are not only more cost effective than prescription medications, but they are often times just as effective, if not more so than the meds from the doctor. Doctors aren’t striving to find a cure for this condition because the constant nature means people will come in for medicine, which they are paid to prescribe. This is one of the prescriptions you will be on the rest of your life—if you are on a maintenance medicine. Long-term prophylaxis of cold sores is indicated when you get cold sores frequently, at a rate of about 6 or more times per year. I would absolutely recommend to others and will utilize the many services available at this office.


Ringpfeil explained everything to us and made my daugther (almost 6 yo) feel very comfortable in the office. FDA (Food and Drug Administration) approved the drug for use against the virus known as varicella-zoster in the treatment of viral infections which caused shingles and chicken pox. A study published last year, however, revealed that herpes strains which are resistant to acyclovir could develop over a certain period of time.
Aside from acyclovir’s availability in 200 mg capsules, 400mg and 800mg tablets, and 200mg and 5ml liquid suspension, it is also available as a 50mg or 40ml injection, a 500mg and 1000mg powder and as 5% ointment.
There have been reports of seizures, hepatitis, agitation, hypersensitivity reaction, muscle pain, and anemia, all of which must be reported to the patient’s doctor for advisement.
It is no surprise doctors haven’t been able to find a cure for the condition—they want to keep you coming back to the office for continued treatment! Oral herpes manifests itself as cold sores and fever blisters, while genital herpes forms bumps and sores below the belt… affecting both men and women. The prescription treatments will either help with an outbreak, or will be taken daily to help prevent an outbreak. Minor lifestyle adjustments, such as staying away from artificial sweeteners such as aspartame and closely monitoring your stress levels can also reduce the likelihood of an outbreak.
Otherwise, you will have to run to the doctor each time you have an outbreak to get a prescription. The potential side effects of daily oral medication must be considered with infrequent cold sores. Doctors have also prescribed acyclovir in the treatment of the Epstein-Barr virus which causes mononucleosis. If you’re feeling stressed, use meditation and yoga to keep yourself calm to prevent manifestation. If you know you carry the virus, but haven’t had an outbreak, you can also use herbs to prevent the outbreak. In some instances, samples of representative lesions are taken and tested for the presence of the HSV1 or HSV2 virus.



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