Name: Acyclovir Injection
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What is acyclovir?
Acyclovir is an antiviral drug. It slows the growth and spread of the herpes virus so that the body can fight off the infection. Acyclovir will not cure herpes, but it can lessen the symptoms of the infection.
Acyclovir injection is used to treat severe infections caused by herpes viruses, including severe forms of genital herpes, shingles, herpes encephalitis (swelling of the brain), and herpes infections in people with other diseases that weaken the immune system.
Acyclovir may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.
Before taking this medicine
You should not use this medication if you are allergic to acyclovir or valacyclovir (Valtrex).
If you have any of these other conditions, you may need an acyclovir dose adjustment or special tests:
kidney disease (or if you are on dialysis);
a brain or nervous system disorder such as Parkinson's disease, schizophrenia, or tardive dyskinesia; or
an electrolyte imbalance (such as high or low levels of calcium, sodium, or potassium in your blood).
FDA pregnancy category B. This medication is not expected to be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment. Herpes virus can be passed from an infected mother to her baby during childbirth. If you have genital herpes, it is very important to prevent herpes lesions during your pregnancy so that you do not have a genital lesion when your baby is born.
Acyclovir can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Use the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
What happens if I overdose?
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.
Overdose symptoms may include agitation, seizure (convulsions), hallucinations, and urinating less than usual or not at all.
What other drugs will affect acyclovir injection?
Before using acyclovir, tell your doctor if you are also taking probenecid (Benemid). If you are using probenecid, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests during treatment with acyclovir.
There may be other drugs that can interact with acyclovir. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.