ACYCLOVIR (ay SYE kloe veer) helps manage infections, such as cold sores and genital herpes, caused by viruses. This medication does not kill the virus and it may still be possible to spread the virus to others. This medication will not treat colds, the flu, or infections caused by bacteria.
This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.
COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Zovirax, Zovirax Cream, Zovirax Ointment
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
This medication is only for external use on the skin. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Wash hands before and after use. Use a finger cot or rubber gloves so that you do not spread the infection to another site. Apply a thin layer to cover all lesions. Do not get this medication in your eyes. If you do, rinse out with plenty of cool tap water. Use this medication at regular intervals. Do not use more often than directed. Finish the full course prescribed by your care team even if you think you are better. Do not stop using except on your care team's advice.
Talk to your care team regarding the use of this medication in children. Special care may be needed.
Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.
NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.
If you miss a dose, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, use only that dose. Do not use double or extra doses.
Interactions are not expected. Do not apply other skin care products (cosmetics, lip balm, or sunscreens) to the sore unless your care team tells you to.
This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use. Also tell them if you smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs. Some items may interact with your medicine.
Visit your care team for regular checks on your progress. Tell your care team if your symptoms do not start to get better or if they get worse.
If you are being treated for a sexually transmitted infection (STI), avoid sexual contact until you have finished your treatment. Your sexual partner may also need treatment.
Side effects that you should report to your care team as soon as possible:
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your care team if they continue or are bothersome):
This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Keep out of the reach of children and pets.
Store at room temperature between 15 and 25 degrees C (59 and 77 degrees F). Protect from moisture. Keep the container tightly closed. Get rid of any unused medication after the expiration date.
NOTE: This sheet is a summary. It may not cover all possible information. If you have questions about this medicine, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider.
Copyright ©2023 Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Note: Introduction and Additional Common Questions written and medically approved by Cleveland Clinic professionals.