In this drug factsheet:DIN (Drug Identification Number)
|02307936 ||DOM-VALACYCLOVIR 500MG TABLET|
How does this medication work? What will it do for me?
Valacyclovir belongs to the class of medications known as antivirals. It is used to treat a viral infection affecting the skin known as shingles (herpes zoster). It is also used to treat cold sores, and to treat and prevent recurrences of genital herpes. It works by interfering with the way the virus reproduces. Valacyclovir works by stopping the virus from multiplying and spreading to nearby healthy cells.
It does not cure shingles, cold sores, or genital herpes, but it does help the sores to heal more quickly, and it relieves pain and discomfort. When used to prevent recurrences of herpes, it also reduces the risk of transmission (spreading) of the infection to others.
This medication may be available under multiple brand names and/or in several different forms. Any specific brand name of this medication may not be available in all of the forms or approved for all of the conditions discussed here. As well, some forms of this medication may not be used for all of the conditions discussed here.
Your doctor may have suggested this medication for conditions other than those listed in these drug information articles. If you have not discussed this with your doctor or are not sure why you are taking this medication, speak to your doctor. Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor.
Do not give this medication to anyone else, even if they have the same symptoms as you do. It can be harmful for people to take this medication if their doctor has not prescribed it.
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How should I use this medication?
The recommended adult dose of valacyclovir to treat shingles is 1000 mg 3 times daily for 7 days. The treatment should be started within 72 hours of the onset of the rash.
To treat the first episode of genital herpes, the dose of valacyclovir is 1000 mg twice daily for 10 days. Treatment should be started within 72 hours of the onset of symptoms, and ideally within 48 hours for best effectiveness.
To treat recurrent genital herpes, the dose of valacyclovir is 500 mg twice daily for 3 days. The treatment should be started at the first sign or symptom of recurrence.
To prevent recurrences of genital herpes, the recommended dose is 1000 mg once daily. For people with a history of 9 or fewer recurrences per year, the recommended dosage of valacyclovir is 500 mg orally once daily. This dose helps to reduce the risk of transmitting genital herpes to others.
To treat cold sores, the usual dose of valacyclovir is 2000 mg at the first sign of symptoms, followed by another 2000 mg 12 hours later. The treatment should be started at the first sign of a cold sore (tingling, itching, or burning sensations) for best effectiveness.
People with poor kidney function may need lower doses.
Many things can affect the dose of medication that a person needs, such as body weight, other medical conditions, and other medications. If your doctor has recommended a dose different from the ones listed here, do not change the way you are using the medication without talking to your doctor.
Valacyclovir can be taken with or without food. If it causes stomach upset, taking it with food may help. Make sure you drink enough water to prevent dehydration while taking valacyclovir.
It is important to take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. If you miss a dose, take it as soon as possible and continue with your regular dosing schedule. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your usual dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one. If you are not sure what to do after missing a dose, contact your doctor or pharmacist for advice.
Store this medication at room temperature, protect it from light and moisture, and keep it out of the reach of children.
Do not dispose of medications in wastewater (e.g. down the sink or in the toilet) or in household garbage. Ask your pharmacist how to dispose of medications that are no longer needed or have expired.
What form(s) does this medication come in?
Each blue, capsule-shaped, coated tablet debossed with "VC" followed by "500" on one side and nothing on the other contains valacyclovir 500 mg (as valacyclovir hydrochloride). Nonmedicinal ingredients:
crospovidone, FD&C Blue No. 2 Aluminum Lake, hydroxypropyl methylcellulose, polyethylene glycol 400, magnesium stearate, microcrystalline cellulose, polysorbate 80, and titanium dioxide.
Who should NOT take this medication?
Do not take this medication if you are allergic to valacyclovir, acyclovir, or any ingredients of the medication.