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Valtrex For Genital Herpes

ValtrexValtrex is generically known as valacyclovir hydrochloride and is an anti-viral drug used to treat viral infections like herpes zoster and herpes simplex.

It is marketed by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) under that brand name, in addition to Zelitrex. GSK is a pharmaceutical, vaccines, biologics, and consumer healthcare company that operates worldwide. It is based in London, England and is considered to be the 3rd largest pharmaceutical firm in the world following Johnson and Johnson and Pfizer. Aside from viral borne diseases, GSK also has a huge variety of other products to treat conditions like cancer, asthma, bacterial infections, diabetes, mental problems, and digestive ailments. Valtrex is just one of the company’s many health products.

Herpes SimplexBeing an antiviral drug, it works for herpes simplex virus types I and II, varicella zoster virus, Epstein-Barr virus, and cytomegalovirus. It is very active against herpes simplex viruses of both types. Though, its efficacy against cytomegalovirus is limited. Although it was once thought to have little effect on Epstein-Barr virus, recent studies have shown that it has great potential for the treatment of infectious mononucleosis by eliminating the Epstein-Barr virus. It is also being used for prophylaxis against Herpes B virus post-exposure.

Valtrex is a prodrug, meaning it only becomes active once metabolized. Being a prodrug increases its efficiency compared to other medications. It is an esterified form of acyclovir and has better oral bioavailability at about 55% compared to acyclovir’s 10-20%. Valacyclovir is converted into its active form, acyclovir, by esterases and amino acid valine through the hepatic first-pass. Resistance against valacyclovir has not been medically significant but mutations and deficiencies in viral thymidine kinases do cause the phenomenon.

Valtrex pillValacyclovir is sold in 500 mg and 1 gram dosages under the brand name Valtrex. Aside from the main ingredient valacyclovir hydrochloride, it also has inactive ingredients including colloidal silicon dioxide, carnauba wax, FD & C Blue Number 2 Lake, crospovidone, magnesium stearate, hypromellose, microcrystalline cellulose, polysorbate 80, polyethylene, titanium dioxide and povidone. If you are allergic to any of the ingredients, you are to avoid taking the drug.

Unfortunately, even with its active effects on herpes simplex virus, it still can not cure genital herpes. For this disease, treatment is mainly to minimize its contagiousness and the recurrence of symptoms. The disease will remain for life but with the help of the drug, its bothersome symptoms can be controlled along with its transmission. However, even with this medication, sexual intercourse should be avoided during an active shedding. Safe sex must also be practiced at all times by using latex condoms.

The drug is also used for immune-compromised patients like those of advanced HIV and patients undergoing chemotherapy. This is to suppress herpes, thereby preventing more problems for the patient. However, the safety and efficacy in these patients has not been clearly established but is already widely used. Even its efficacy in preventing the spread of herpes during sexual intercourse is still not well established but also widely used for that purpose. In addition, it also has many specific limitations, so an appointment with a physician is imperative prior to use.

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