Valtrex (valacyclovir)

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Valtrex {GlaxoSmithKline)

Generic Name

valacyclovir, pronounced val a SYE kloe veer

Valtrex (Valacyclovir (Valacyclovir Hydrochloride))

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Valacyclovir
(Valacyclovir (Valacyclovir Hydrochloride))
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Valtrex
(Valacyclovir (Valacyclovir Hydrochloride))
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Disclaimer

The information contained in this drug guide is intended as an educational resource only. This guide is not exhaustive and does not contain all available information about this drug.This guide is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatment.

The information provided in this guide does not replace the need for the advice and services of medical professionals or the need for medical examination. Always talk to your physician or pharmacist before taking any prescription medication or over the counter drugs (including any supplements) or before making any changes to your treatment. Only your doctor, nurse or pharmacist can provide you with safe and effective advice regarding your drug treatment.

The use of the information in this guide is at your sole risk. This information is provided "AS IS" with no warranties to accuracy or timeliness.

**All trademarks and registered trademarks are the property of their respective owners.


 

What is Valtrex?

Valtrex is a medication that treats infections caused by the herpes virus in adults and children. Valtrex is an antiviral medication slows the growth and spread of the herpes virus so that your body can fight off the infection. This medicine will not cure herpes, but it will lessen the symptoms of the virus. Valtrex is used to treat cold sores in children 12 years of age and older, and to treat chickenpox in children ages 2 and older.

Valtrex may also be used for reasons not stated in this medication guide.

 

Key Facts About Valtrex

If you have you have a weakened immune system, AIDS or HIV, kidney disease, are on dialysis or if you have had a kidney or bone marrow transplant you must tell your doctor before taking Valtrex.

You should start taking Valtrex at the first sign of symptoms, such as blisters, tingling or burning.

The herpes virus is contagious and able to be passed, even while you are being treated with Valtrex. An infected mother can also pass the herpes virus to her unborn baby during childbirth, so take care to prevent herpes lesions during your pregnancy so that you do not have a genital lesion when your baby is born.

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. Valtrex is in FDA pregnancy category B. It is not known that if Valtrex can cause problems in your newborn. Consult with your doctor if you become pregnant while taking Valtrex. You should not breastfeed while taking Valtrex, as we know that Valtrex can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby.

Valtrex should only be given to children with a prescription from a doctor.

 

Before You Take Valtrex

If you are allergic to valacyclovir or acyclovir (Zovirax) you should not take Valtrex.

If you have AIDS or are HIV positive you should tell your doctor before taking Valtrex.

Tell your doctor if you have kidney disease or are on dialysis before taking Valtrex.

You should let your doctor know if you have had a bone marrow or kidney transplant before taking Valtrex.

You should take care to avoid sexual intercourse or use a latex condom so you can prevent the spread of the herpes virus to others.

Do not let infected areas come into contact with other people, and avoid touching an infected area and then touching your eyes. You should wash your hands frequently to avoid passing this infection to others.

 

Valtrex Drug Interactions

You should inform your doctor if you are taking any of the following:

  • anti-viral medications like adefovir (Hepsera), cidofovir (Vistide), and foscarnet (Foscavir)
  • cancer medications like aldesleukin (Proleukin), carmustine (Gliadel), cisplatin (Platinol), ifosfamide (Ifex), oxaliplatin (Eloxatin), plicamycin (Mithracin), streptozocin (Zanosar) and tretinoin (Vesanoid)
  • I.V. antibiotics like amphotericin B (Fungizone, AmBisome), amikacin (Amikin), bacitracin (Baci-IM), capreomycin (Capastat), gentamicin (Garamycin), kanamycin (Kantrex) and vancomycin (Vancocin)
  • lithium (Eskalith, Lithobid)
  • methotrexate (Rheumatrex, Trexal)
  • organ transplant rejection medications like sirolimus (Rapamune) and tacrolimus (Prograf)
  • pain and arthritis medications like acetaminophen (Tylenol), aspirin, diclofenac (Voltaren), etodolac (Lodine), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), indomethacin (Indocin) and naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn)
  • ulcerative colitis medications like mesalamine (Pentasa) and sulfasalazine (Azulfidine)

Other drugs you take that are not listed may interact with Valtrex. You should tell your doctor about all of the medications you use. This includes prescription drugs, vitamins, supplements and herbal products, and over the counter medications. You should not begin taking a new medication without telling your doctor first.

 

Directions for Taking Valtrex

You should take Valtrex exactly as directed by your doctor. It is important that you do not take Valtrex in larger or smaller amounts, or for longer or shorter than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label and follow any dose changes carefully if your doctor instructs you to change your dose.

Valtrex may be taken with or without food.

You should take Valtrex with a full glass of water. Be sure to drink plenty of water while you are taking Valtrex to keep your kidneys working properly.

While you are using Valtrex take care to keep your lesions clean and dry. Wearing loose clothing may help to prevent irritation of your lesions.

You should take care to avoid sexual intercourse or use a latex condom so you can prevent the spread of the herpes virus to others.

Do not let infected areas come into contact with other people, and avoid touching an infected area and then touching your eyes. You should wash your hands frequently to avoid passing this infection to others.

Valtrex needs to be stored at room temperature, and away from light, moisture and heat.

If you miss a dose of Valtrex you should attempt to take the missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if it is less than 12 hours away until your next scheduled dose wait for your next dose. Do not take the missed dose in addition to your regular dose.

 

Valtrex Side Effects

If you experience any of the following adverse effects you should stop taking Valtrex and seek emergency medical help immediately:

  • allergic reactions such as breathing difficulties, hives, or swelling of your face, lips, throat or tongue
  • bleeding or bruising
  • bloody diarrhea
  • confusion with hallucinations
  • drowsiness with mood changes, increased thirst and loss of appetite
  • fainting
  • fever
  • nausea and vomiting
  • pale or yellowed skin
  • red spots on your skin that are not related to the herpes virus
  • seizures
  • feeling shaky or unsteady
  • speech problems
  • urinating less than usual or not at all
  • vision problems
  • weakness
  • weight gain with swelling and shortness of breath

Less serious side effects of Valtrex may include:

  • depression
  • dizziness
  • headache
  • joint pain
  • nausea
  • mild skin rash
  • sore throat
  • stuffy nose
  • feeling tired
  • upset stomach

It should be noted that this is not a complete list of possible side effects of Valtrex. You should contact your physician for a complete list and medical advice regarding these effects.

 

Valtrex Description and Dosing

Valtrex is available as a 500mg tablet. The 500 mg tablet is blue, film-coated, capsule-shaped and printed with “Valtrex 500 mg.” Valtrex is also available as a 1 gram tablet. The 1 gram table is blue, film-coated, capsule-shaped, and has a partial score bar on both sides and is printed with “Valtrex 1 gram.”

You should consult your doctor for specific dosing pertaining to you. Do not attempt to alter or change your dose without your physician’s consent.

If you suspect that you have overdosed with Valtrex you should seek emergency help immediately.

 

Ingredients in Valtrex

Valtrex is comprised of the main ingredient valacyclovir hydrochloride. Other ingredients include carnauba wax, colloidal silicon dioxide, crospovidone, FD&C Blue No. 2 Lake, hypromellose, magnesium stearate, microcrystalline cellulose, polyethylene glycol, polysorbate 80, povidone, and titanium dioxide. The blue, film-coated tablets are printed with edible white ink.

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Disclaimer

The information contained in this drug guide is intended as an educational resource only. This guide is not exhaustive and does not contain all available information about this drug.This guide is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatment.

The information provided in this guide does not replace the need for the advice and services of medical professionals or the need for medical examination. Always talk to your physician or pharmacist before taking any prescription medication or over the counter drugs (including any supplements) or before making any changes to your treatment. Only your doctor, nurse or pharmacist can provide you with safe and effective advice regarding your drug treatment.

The use of the information in this guide is at your sole risk. This information is provided "AS IS" with no warranties to accuracy or timeliness.

**All trademarks and registered trademarks are the property of their respective owners.