Zovirax Cream

Generic Name: Acyclovir

  • What is this medication and its most common uses?

    Zovirax cream is a topical medicine (applied directly on the skin) used to treat cold sores.

  • What should I know when beginning and continuing on this medication?

    How does this medication work?

    Zovirax cream works by lowering the ability of the virus to multiply in your body, thereby reducing your symptoms.

    What are the beneficial effects of this medication and when should I begin to have results?

    What: Zovirax cream has been shown to help your lesions heal faster.

    When: Everyone responds differently to treatment, so try to be patient and follow your healthcare provider's directions. It is important that you use Zovirax cream exactly as your healthcare provider has prescribed.

    How do I know it is working?

    You may start to notice an improvement in your symptoms after you start using Zovirax cream. This is a good indicator that your medication is working. Your healthcare provider may ask you questions and order tests to assess how well your infection is being treated.

  • What are the possible side effects of this medication?

    The following is not a full list of side effects. Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your healthcare provider as soon as possible. Only your healthcare provider can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this medication.

    More common side effects may include: dry or cracked lips; dry, itchy, or flaky skin; burning or stinging feeling of your skin.

    Less common side effects may include:

    Zovirax cream may cause irritation of your skin.

  • Who should not take this medication?

    Do not use Zovirax cream if you are allergic to it, any of its ingredients, or to a similar medicine called valacyclovir.

  • What should I tell my healthcare provider before I take the first dose of this medication?

    Tell your healthcare provider about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking before beginning treatment with Zovirax cream. Also, talk to your healthcare provider about your complete medical history.

  • What is the usual dosage?

    The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your healthcare provider uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your healthcare provider may prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your healthcare provider's approval.

    Adults and adolescents ≥12 years: Apply to the affected area(s) 5 times a day for 4 days.

  • How should I take this medication?

    Apply Zovirax cream exactly as prescribed by your healthcare provider. Do not change your dose or stop using Zovirax cream without first talking to your healthcare provider.

    Wash your hands before and after using Zovirax cream.

    Apply Zovirax cream to clean, dry skin. Rub the cream in until it disappears.

    Start treatment as early as possible, when your lesion or symptoms appear.

  • What should I avoid while taking this medication?

    Do not use Zovirax cream in your eyes, nose, or mouth.

    Do not use Zovirax cream for genital herpes.

    Do not cover the area being treated with a bandage or dressing unless otherwise instructed by your healthcare provider.

    Do not apply another type of skin product (such as cosmetics, sun screens, or lip balms) or other skin medications to the cold sore area while using Zovirax cream unless otherwise instructed by your healthcare provider.

    Do not bathe, shower, or swim right after applying Zovirax cream.

    Do not breastfeed if you have herpes lesions near or on your breast.

  • What are the possible food and drug interactions associated with this medication?

    No significant interactions have been reported with Zovirax cream at this time. However, always tell your healthcare provider about any medicines you take, including over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

  • May I receive this medication if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?

    The effects of Zovirax cream during pregnancy and breastfeeding are unknown. Tell your healthcare provider immediately if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

  • What should I do if I miss a dose of this medication?

    If you miss a dose of Zovirax cream, apply it as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the one you missed and return to your regular dosing schedule. Do not apply two doses at once.

  • How should I store this medication?

    Store at room temperature.