GENERIC NAME: PENCICLOVIR CREAM - TOPICAL (pen-SYE-kloe-vir)
BRAND NAME(S): Denavir
USES: This medication is used to treat "cold sores/fever blisters" (herpes labialis). It can speed up healing of the sores and decrease symptoms (such as tingling, pain, burning, itching). Penciclovir belongs to a class of medications known as antivirals. It works by stopping the growth of the virus. This medication does not cure herpes, and it does not prevent passing the infection to someone else. It does not prevent future occurrences.
HOW TO USE: Use this medication at the first sign of infection (such as tingling, burning, redness, or sores). Wash your hands with soap and water before and after applying this medication. Clean and dry the affected areas before applying the medication. Apply a thin layer of penciclovir cream to completely cover the area of the cold sore or the area of tingling/itching/redness/swelling, and rub in gently. Apply the cream every 2 hours (except during sleep) for 4 days or as directed by your doctor.Apply to skin only. Do not apply this medication in or near the eyes since this medication can irritate the eyes. If you do get medication in your eyes, flush with plenty of water. Do not apply inside the mouth or nose.Dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. Do not use this drug more often or for longer than prescribed.Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. This medication works best when the amount of drug absorbed by the skin stays at a constant level. Therefore, use this drug at evenly spaced intervals. To help you remember, use it at the same times each day.Cold sores (herpes) can spread easily. Penciclovir cream does not prevent the spread of herpes. Avoid close physical contact with others (such as kissing) during an outbreak until the cold sores have completely healed. Also, try not to touch the cold sore, and wash your hands if you do touch the cold sore.Tell your doctor if your condition persists or worsens after treatment is finished.
SIDE EFFECTS: Redness, burning, stinging, or numbness may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any of the following symptoms of a serious allergic reaction: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.In the US -Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
PRECAUTIONS: Before using penciclovir, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to famciclovir; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history.Tell your doctor if you are pregnant before using this medication. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.It is not known if this medication passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
DRUG INTERACTIONS: Your doctor or pharmacist may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for them. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with your doctor or pharmacist first.Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and nonprescription/herbal products you may use.Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share the list with your doctor and pharmacist.
OVERDOSE: This medicine may be harmful if swallowed. If swallowing or overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.
NOTES: Do not share this medication with others. Doing so may spread the infection.Cold sore outbreaks can be triggered by many factors such as stress, hormonal changes (such as pregnancy, menstrual period), injury/surgery on the mouth (such as dental work), tiredness, sunlight, cold weather, or fever/cold/flu.
MISSED DOSE: If you miss a dose, use it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your regular dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
STORAGE: Store this medication at room temperature between 68-77 degrees F (20-25 degrees C). Firmly screw the cap back on the tube of medication after each use. Keep all medicines away from children and pets.Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company for more details about how to safely discard your product.
Information last revised March 2013. Copyright(c) 2013 First Databank, Inc.
Latest MedicineNet News
Daily Health News
Multimedia: Slideshows, Images & Quizzes
Picture of Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1
A herpes virus that causes cold sores and fever blisters in and around the mouth. See a picture of Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1...
Picture of Herpes Blister (Cold Sore)
Cold sores (fever blisters) are caused by the herpes simplex virus (HSV), passed on through contact with infected skin or body...
Picture of Cold Sores Treatment
You can't cure HSV or a cold sore, but you can alleviate the pain it causes by avoiding spicy or acidic foods, applying ice, and...
Picture of Cold Sore and Canker Sore
Cold sores and canker sores aren't the same. See a picture of Cold Sore and Canker Sore and learn more about the health topic....
Picture of Cold Sore Between Nose and Mouth
Can a cold sore appear somewhere other than your lip? They are not as common, but cold sores can appear anywhere on the face,...
Picture of Cold Sores (Fever Blisters)
Cold sores, sometimes called fever blisters, are groups of small blisters on the lip and around the mouth. See a picture of Cold...
Cold Sores Causes, Remedies, & Diagnosis
How to get rid of cold sores? First learn about the herpes virus and how it causes cold sores. When are cold sores contagious?...
Related Disease Conditions
Although a fever technically is any body temperature above the normal of 98.6 F (37 C), in practice, a person is usually not...
Genital Herpes in Women (Symptoms, Signs, Treatment)
Genital herpes is a sexually transmitted disease (STD) caused by the herpes simplex virus (HSV). Symptoms of genital herpes...
Cold Sores (Nongenital Herpes Simplex Infections)
Herpes simplex infections are common and when they appear around the mouth and lips, people often refer to them as "cold sores"...
Pimple vs. Cold Sore
Pimples are areas of skin inflammation with pus in the center. Cold sores are fluid-filled blisters. Pimples are caused by...
Treatment & Diagnosis
Medications & Supplements
Prevention & Wellness
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.