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About Valtrex

If you use Valtrex, please help others by adding your feedback. What would you tell your best friend about this product? Please remember that we do not give medical advice. That is for your local health care provider, who is familiar with your medical history.

Subj: Valtrex side effects
Date: 11/1/2008
I was given a weeks sample of 500 mg of Valtrex because my blood test showed positive for HS-2. I told my doctor I had never experienced an outbreak but thinking back now I think I may have months ago now that I really know what it is and what to look for. However its day 3 of my first week of Valtrex and I am sick as a dog. Diarrhea, stomach pain, fever, etc.. Is it possible the Valtrex could have caused this? If so, how long do these side effects last? It's so bad that I don't wanna continue on the medictaion.

AskDocWeb: The diarrhea and stomach pain are possible side effects of Valtrex. The fever may be caused by any viral infection. Please talk to your doctor before deciding on continuing.

Subj: Changing the way things taste
Date: 11/4/2008
I have used this on a daily basis for close to six months for shingles on my face, I get them in my sinus cavity, my eye and my mouth. It works like a dream. I have a question though about it changing the way things taste. I seem to notice that cola products have an acrid taste to them and things that I normally enjoyed don't taste the same.

AskDocWeb: That is called taste perversion and although it is not listed as a side effect it may happen to a small percentage of users.

Subj: Dystonia treatment?
Date: 11/5/2008
I'm taking 4 grams per day as a trial to see if it helps my dystonia. I weight 47 kg. What is the maximum dose I can take? Also is the dosage better spread out rather than 2 grammes twice a day maybe 1 gramme 4 times per day? Thanks,

AskDocWeb: Treatments for dystonia typically focus on drugs by trial and error and finding out what might work best is still experimental. The idea is to reduce the symptoms of spasms, pain, disturbed postures and functions. That would be considered an off label use of valtrex. Readers are encouraged to share their experiences with this and other uses of Valtrex such as the treatment of EB Simplex.

Dystonia is a rare disorder marked by intense and irregular muscle contractions (sustained or spasmodic) that cause abnormal body movements or posture. Dystonia can be generalized or focused in one area and the cause is unknown. Except for dopa-responsive dystonia and Wilson's disease, there is no specific pharmacologic treatment for dystonia. The most often prescribed treatment for dystonia is Botox injections into the specific muscles that are spasming.

Subj: Optic Neuritis
Date: 11/6/2008
I am 17 now and when I was 11 I was put on a year dosage of Valtrex for Erythema Multiforme. Eight weeks ago, I went blind in the top of my right eye, neurological problems, loss of bladder control, short term memory loss, mood swings, fatigue, weight gain, bad head, neck and back pain. I was hospitalized for 6 days and had many tests done. Everything coming back negative. I was diagnosed with Optic Neuritis caused by a virus that's been in my body. Could this be a side effect from long term use of the Valtrex?

AskDocWeb: No, Optic Neuritis is known to be caused by a virus but not by Valtrex.

Subj: Build up immunity to the virus?
Date: 11/9/2008
I was diagnosed with HSV 2, 2 yrs ago and was initially put on 500mg a day, well I stopped and immediatly had an outbreak as predicted, so I started taking it when needed (1000mg once a day for three days) well for lack of insurance I am trying to just "get through" this outbreak that started 2 days ago with using lidocaine as a numbing agent... I am wondering if I let nature take its course if my immune system will build up faster to the virus? And how long the symptoms will last with out taking anything at all, just vitamins. Or will it clear up on its own at all?? Thank you.

AskDocWeb: If untreated the entire cycle of an outbreak takes about two weeks. Unfortunately you're body doesn't build up immunity to this virus. That is why outbreaks are an ongoing problem that will continue until medical science comes up with a cure.

Subj: Alternative ways to deal with outbreaks?
Date: 11/10/2008
Using Valtrex (500mg, twice a day) and does an OK job; but a week later another sore appears on a different area of my lip. This has happened twice so far. I am now uncomfortable with using Zovirax (5%) and Valtrex, and interested in knowing alternative ways to deal with them (i.e. Blistex, which is pretty good aid in keeping the sores moisturized).

AskDocWeb: We encourage readers to share whatever you have found that works.

Subj: Overall, it has its benefits
Date: 11/10/2008
I have been taking Valtrex 1gm for aprox. 10 years. Was the kind you get on the mouth but transferred also in oral sex. I don't know if it really has side effects but I do have joint pain but I also take Lipitor. I would say overall it prevents outbreaks when taken daily because it seems to be under control. I work around sick people on a daily basis and when everyone else is getting sick with virus bugs this medication keeps me healthy. Overall, it has its benefits. You get protection from Herpes and all the other cold virus and flu that goes around. I still use my precaution though, wash my hands often. If you have herpes outbreaks, don't touch the area involved or it will spread to others or yourself.

Subj: Severe psoriasis
Date: 11/12/2008
I am 63 years old I got shingles in Sept 08 my Dr gave me valtrex for the shingles, I have had severe psoriasis about 75 to 80% of my body since 2001 5 days into the valtrex all my psoriasis was gone. My doctor was shocked. I am in 100% in remission.

Subj: What dosage
Date: 11/21/2008
I want to start taking Valtrex for suppression purposes of genital herpes. What dosage and how long should I continue. In the pass I only did a 5 day dose 500 mg twice a day, when there was a outbreak.

AskDocWeb: That is something that your doctor would have to decide based on your current medical condition because this varies from one person to the next.

Subj: Genital herpes in baby
Date: 11/26/2008
Can genital herpes cause brain damage, cerebral palsy, vision or hearing impairment, or death of the baby if the virus is transmitted to the infant before or during the birth. Is this true?

AskDocWeb: The National Institute of Health says it is true. Here are some of the major possible Complications the virus is transmitted to the infant before or during the birth:
  • Bacterial or fungal infection of skin lesions
  • Brain and nervous system (neurological) problems
  • Coma
  • Death
  • Developmental delay
  • Excessive bleeding, disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC)
  • Eye problems (chorioretinitis, keratitis)
  • Gastrointestinal problems, including diarrhea
  • Hepatitis
  • Jaundice
  • Liver failure
  • Lung problems including pneumonia or pneumonitis
  • Respiratory distress
  • Seizure
  • Shock
  • Skin lesions
Infants with herpes often do poorly, despite antiviral medications and early treatment. In infants with skin disease, the vesicles may come back repeatedly even after treatment is finished. These recurrences put them at risk for learning disabilities.

Subj: Immune to Valtrex?
Date: 11/27/2008
I have used Valtrex before and it has helped. I am getting married in April and want to take it for a month straight so my lips don't look ridiculous when I get married, and so I can kiss my husband!! Can you body become immune to Valtrex? Can it stop working?

AskDocWeb: No, to date there are no reports of anyone becoming immune to Valtrex.

Subj: This stuff is TOXIC!
Date: 12/2/2008
I have had herpes2 for about 12years now. I take valtrex on an as needed basis since I don't like to take any medication. When I feel an outbreak coming on I start taking two 500mg a day. I have maybe two outbreaks a year. However I am no longer going to take valtrex. Maybe I am the only one to experience these side effects, but I would rather go through the outbreak in pain than to experience the side effects I am feeling long after stoping the treatment. I experienced I rash with painful itching on my chest. My back hurts so bad, I thought maybe my mattress was going so I got a new mattress. That didn't help. I am active and fit and 38 years old and when I wake up in the morning I feel like I'm 70 years old. If there was ever a fire in my apartment(god forbid) I don't know if I could make it up in time. I have never felt so horrible. I believe in years to come they will have commercials saying "if you have taken vatrex you are entitle to a lump sum" cause this stuff is TOXIC!

Subj: Quit taking the Valtrex when I started feeling better
Date: 12/2/2008
I was diagnosed with shingles and put on Valtex. I do not like taking medications so I quit taking the Valtrex when I started feeling better. I have over half of the prescription left. What are my chances of getting Shingle again since I didnt finish the medication.

AskDocWeb: Whether or not you finished your treatment has no influence on the chances of getting future outbreaks.

Subj: Diagnosed with genital herpes
Date: 12/9/2008
I was just recently diagnosed with genital herpes...when I urinate it burns and hurts so badly. Is this an effect from the gh? I obviously have taken a mirror to investigate and the skin inside is very raw and irritated. Also, do you know after how long taking the Valtrex that it will take effect? Thank you...

AskDocWeb: Valtrex starts working within 24 hours with some relief. You may want to ask your doctor about a cream you can use that will reduce the burning sensation.

Subj: Blood pressure has gone up
Date: 12/12/2008
I just started taking Valtrex for suppression purposes. I am also on Benicar for high blood pressure, and I think that my blood pressure has gone up since I started taking Valtrex. Is this a common side effect?

AskDocWeb: It is not common but it is one of the possible side effects (less than 1%). Please have this checked by your health care provider.

Subj: Flue like symptoms
Date: 12/16/2008
I went on valtrex 2 months ago it worked great for, about 40 days, I have cebv my levels last tested 4 months ago was 2300 my main symptom with eb is body aches, flu like, when I first went on valtrex it worked great I felt great, then I went from 3 pills a day down to one I still felt great, then I went down to a half, of pill, after 5 days on a half a pill the flue like symptoms can back, so I started takeing 3 pills a day 3 g now its been 4 days and nothing, my queston to you is should I continue on 3 pills, or should I try anther anti viral drug? What would you do? Thanks,

AskDocWeb: We would consult with our doctor and let him decide.

Subj: Dosage for cold sores or viral meningitis
Date: 12/17/2008
What is the proper dosage of valtrex necessary to keep cold sore or viral meningitis at bay? It seems every time I stop taking it I get an outbreak.

AskDocWeb: What is appropriate for you is something that your doctor will need to decide.

Read more feedback about Valtrex.

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This consumer advocate website is protected by copyright 2007-2009 Askdocweb, Inc. All Rights Reserved. This is a layman's report on Valtrex and is not intended to replace discussions with a health care provider. Do not use the information on this forum as a substitute for your doctor's advice. Always consult your doctor before taking any drug and follow your doctor's directions. Source material: Food and Drug Administration, Medline, Physician's Desk Reference, and the largest community of people in the world, those who are concerned about side effects and healthcare.
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