Feedback on Acyclovir Side Effects and Usage, page 28
If you’ve used Acyclovir, 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: I don’t agree
I was diagnosed with gential herpes 25 years ago. I go years without a breakout. I have had 3 long term relationships, none have tested positive. Theres alot of info saying I am contagious even between the breakouts. I don’t agree. I see that I would attain some side effect like I have read. Is my partner really in danger? When I get a breakout, I feel it coming, take the pill and immediately heals. I am not one who has frequent breakouts as noted above. Can you share some info for those of us who have a breakout once in many years? Thanks,
AskDocWeb: You could think about contagion in terms of a range from highly contagious to minimally contagious. Those who have frequent outbreaks also have the most viral shedding so they would be at the high end of the contagious range. Those who have the least amount of outbreaks are on the low side of the contagious range. It may be that you have been lucky but the possibility of passing on the virus to someone else is still real. Just because it hasn’t happened yet is not proof that it won’t happen.
Subj: Tingly legs, joint and muscle pain
I was prescribed 200 mg, five times daily for suspected genital herpes. When I saw the doctor, I mentioned that my legs were feeling tingly, in the same way that skin does when you have ‘flu or similar. Since starting to take the medication (two days ago), I have had joint pain in my legs, muscle pain in my legs, noticed blood from my anus when I use the toilet, and have had waves of nausea that have had me lying on the floor, unable to get up. I’ve stopped taking the pills, but I don’t know if the symptoms above are more likely to be side effects from the Aciclovir, or from the herpes. Any input gratefully received.
AskDocWeb: Leg pain is listed as one of the possible side effects. Bloody stools, joint pain and muscle pains are not listed as side effects so check with your doctor.
My duaghter has a chickenpox started just 2 days ago. Her doctor prescribed aciclovir cream 4x a day will this be okay to apply anywhere her body? Thanks.
AskDocWeb: Aciclovir is for external use only and contact with the eyes should be avoided. If you get any of the cream in the eyes, wash it out with plenty of cool water. If your eyes get sore afterwards, tell your doctor. It is not suitable for application to mucous membranes such as inside the mouth or vagina as it may be an irritant to these areas. In order to avoid spreading the infection, wash your hands before and after applying the cream and avoid touching the sores with either hands or towels.
Subj: Acyclovir and verapamil
Are there any known drug interactions between acyclovir and verapamil which I am taking for high blood pressure?
AskDocWeb: We didn’t find any drug interactions between Acyclovir and Verapamil but our database may not contain every known interaction so check with your doctor to be sure. We did find a few other drug interactions that you should be aware of, including the following.
If verapamil is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either drug could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your doctor before taking verapamil with any of the following:
- ACE inhibitor-type blood pressure drugs such as captopril and enalapril maleate
- Beta-blocker-type blood pressure drugs such as atenolol, metoprolol tartrate, and propranolol hydrochloride
- Diuretics such as furosemide and hydrochlorothiazide
- Grapefruit juice
- Nitrates such as isosorbide dinitrate and nitroglycerin
- Other high blood pressure drugs such as prazosin hydrochloride
- Vasodilator-type blood pressure drugs such as minoxidil
Subj: Women who have hair loss
I have had herpes keratitis in the left eye for 38 years. I have been taking acyclovir since I was 34 and I am now 60. I take a daily dose of 400 mg along with a restasis drop in the eye. (I have also had cataract surg due to early steroid use for the condition and later a corneal transplant 20 years ago). When my opthamologist put me on acyclovir 26 years ago he described it as generally “well tolerated.” I would say it is, except for that I used to have very thick hair (took 8 hours to dry from a shampoo — now it takes one hour). It took a long time for me to notice the change, and my physician dismissed it as part of aging/ hormone changes. I am curious to see that others have experienced this as a result of acyclovir use. What do you recommend to women who have hair loss and who will have to take this drug for life?
AskDocWeb: The typical response from dermatologists seems to be Minoxidil 2% but we don’t really have a good recommendation yet. You might take a look at Nisim NewHair Biofactors. It is a shampoo designed especially for those with hair loss.
Subj: Bells Palsy
My husband had the shingles in his right ear in March & bells Palsy. He still has severe ear pain at times. Any suggestions? Would Acyclovir help the pain?
AskDocWeb: We know that others with Bells Palsy are getting some pain relief by using Acyclovir so it is a possibility. See Arguments favoring the pharmacotherapy of Bells’ palsy.
Subj: ANA blood test
Can 10 years of taking acyclovir 1000 mg. daily affect ana blood test mine is very high dr. donnt know why sed rate is normal. Thanks,
AskDocWeb: Sorry Janice, we don’t know but maybe future readers can help out here.
Subj: Long-term dosage of Acyclovir?
What is the long-term dosage of Acyclovir?
AskDocWeb: Although it is possible to have the same dosage for long period of time, as far as we know there is no such thing as a long-term dosage for Acyclovir.
Subj: Acyclovir dosage
Well, I was reading some of the other comments and I take two 800mg horse pills of Acyclovir twice a day for prevenative…so I don’t get an outbreak. Why would I be taking so much when other have not been on that high of a dose?
AskDocWeb: Dosages vary from one person to the next because there are variations in both the severity of the infection and the response people have to the drug. Some people need more help than others in preventing infections.
Subj: My first outbreak
I was just given Acyclovir 400mg, this is my first outbreak, it seems to be working fine so far. I wanted to know if in the future I can have a baby without hurting them? Also after my 10 day treatment will I have another outbreak again?
AskDocWeb: It is important to understand that Acyclovir is a treatment but it is not a cure and does not prevent future outbreaks. If you plan on becoming pregnant, discuss the benefits and risks of using this medicine during pregnancy with your doctor.
Subj: Rash on chest
Can Acyclovir cause a rash on the chest when taken in large amounts?
AskDocWeb: Yes, skin rashes have been reported by Acyclovir users.
Subj: Effect on birth control?
I’m 19 and have shingles. My doctor prescribed me with Acyclovir. It’s working great. But will it effect my birth control, yasmin?
AskDocWeb: No, Acyclovir has no effect on the effectiveness of birth control pills.
Subj: Discomfort in urinating
I have been on acycovir for 1 full day @ 5 tabs per day. noticed no improvement tho it is to early in treatment.. it is for treating shingles outbreak… I’ve notice a little discomfort in urinating. That all.
I just started taking Acyclovir and I keep reading that I should not skip a dose. My old dermatologist use to pricribe me Valtrex, and I would only start taking it when I had outbreaks.. What is the diference with this generic brand if any, and what would happen if I just stopped taking it for a while?
AskDocWeb: The generic should have the same effect as the brand name product. If you are taking Acyclovir for suppressive therapy, which requires daily doses, skipping a dose would increase the chance of an outbreak.
Subj: Diarrhea and questions
I just found out that I have herpes simplex 2 after being in contact with someone with an outbreak. I was in contact with the virus well over a 2 months ago. I already knew I had simplex 1. I have been having simplex 1 with recurring outbreaks in the same spot on my lower lip for about 8 years about 2 times a year. I usually get them around stressful times in the year. I am now taking acyclovir for the simplex 2 case. I have not had an outbreak in the genital area. I was fine for the first week. Then, I started experiencing diarrhea. I have had diarrhea for five days now. The diarrhea is a pain. I now have blood in my stool and it has been black like the first new born bowel movement my daughter had. I have three questions: 1. Is diarrhea a chronic side effect of acyclovir? 2. Is Simplex 2 still considered genital herpes in my case, even though I was diagnosed over 45 days ago? 3. Do you recommend I take acyclovir when I think I am about to experience an outbreak or everyday for suppressive therapy?
AskDocWeb: Diarrhea is one of the side effects that may or may not go away with continued use of Acyclovir. If it continues, check with your doctor. Herpes simplex 2 is the virus that causes 80% of genital herpes infections and from 5 to 10% of oral herpes. The choice of about how best to use Acyclovir should be left up to your doctor. If outbreaks are infrequent you may be able to get by with treatment only when you have an outbreak.
Subj: Intense nausea
I was diagnosed with genital herpes back in 2006 and used Acyclovir when I was having outbreaks. A month ago, I asked my doctor about Valtrex and to be more cost efficient, she put me on Acyclovir every day: 400mg 2X a day. So far, it’s working great and I’ve had no complications. The only side effect that has really come into play has been really intense nausea. It gets so bad sometimes I can’t eat or even drink. I suppose it’s a small price to pay for herpes suppression though. Thanks for including anti-nausea medications. I thought that was really great, especially since I’m sure I’m not the only one who has this kind of reaction to the medication.
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