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Valtrex is a medicine used to treat or prevent genital herpes and shingles (herpes zoster) in adults.
It is also given to treat cold sores in adults and children who are at least 12 years old. In addition, Valtrex is used as a therapy for children with chickenpox who are between 2 and 18 years old.
Valtrex is an antiviral medicine that does not cure an infection such as herpes, but can improve symptoms.
Valtrex is an antiviral medicine used to treat infections with:
Valtrex works by interfering with the way the virus reproduces. Valtrex prevents the virus from multiplying and spreading to nearby healthy cells. It won't cure shingles, cold sores, or genital herpes, but it will help the sores heal faster and relieve pain and discomfort.
Valtrex may cause side effects in some people. The most common side effects of Valtrex are:
The most common side effect is headache.
Dizziness is also said to be a common side effect in people taking Valtrex for cold sores.
Other symptoms may occur when treating shingles or herpes with Valtrex in varying or prolonged doses.
For oral herpes, we recommend that a person start taking Valtrex as soon as he or she feels cold sore symptoms.
There is no clinical data to suggest that Valtrex has any effect if a person starts taking it after blisters have formed.
A person should not take more than 1 day (2 doses) of Valtrex when treating a cold sore. Take the two doses 12 hours apart. Each dose consists of 2 grams of medication.
Valtrex can harm your kidneys. This risk may be increased if you also take certain other medicines, including: antivirals, chemotherapy, certain antibiotics, medicines for intestinal disorders, medicines for high blood pressure, medicines to prevent organ transplant rejection, injectable osteoporosis medicines and some pain or arthritis medicines (including Advil , Motrin, and Aleve). Ask your pharmacist if you think you are taking any other medicines that may harm your kidneys.
Other drugs may interact with Valtrex, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell all your healthcare providers about all the medicines you are taking now and all the medicines you start or stop using.
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