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What is Famciclovir and what is it used for?

Famciclovir is an antiviral medication used to treat genital herpes in adults.

It treats outbreaks and can also be used to prevent future episodes by suppressing the virus.

How does it work?

It works by preventing the virus from reproducing in your body, and so decreasing the severity and length of your outbreaks.

It also relieves symptoms associated with an outbreak, including pain, burning and itching and can speed up the healing time.

However, it is not a cure for herpes and does not prevent the spread of the infection. You should avoid sex as soon as you feel the onset of outbreak symptoms and always use a condom during sex, even while on suppression treatment. This will minimise the chances of passing on the infection to your partner.

How should I take Famciclovir?

The sooner you start medication after you notice symptoms of an outbreak, the more effective the treatment.

Swallow a tablet whole with water two times a day for five days.

Food has no effect on the activity of the medication so it can be taken with or without food.

How long should I take famciclovir tablets for?

To treat an outbreak, take 1 tablet twice a day for five days.

What if I forget to take a dose?

If you miss a dose of Famciclovir, take a tablet as soon as you remember. However, if it is too close to the next dose, you should skip the forgotten dose to avoid taking double the medication.

What is the difference between Famciclovir and Famvir?

Famvir is the trade name for Famciclovir. The medications are medically equivalent, that is, they contain the same active ingredient and have the same efficacy. Famciclovir is the generic version of the medication, so it is available at a lower price on the market.

What is the difference between Famciclovir, Valaciclovir and Aciclovir?

Famciclovir works in a similar way to Aciclovir but has a longer therapeutic effect and therefore, you can take it fewer times a day.

Valaciclovir is a prodrug, which converts into Aciclovir in your body. So, it also stays in the body longer than Aciclovir and can be taken just twice a day.


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Side Effects

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Side effects include: headaches, nausea, stomach pain, diarrhoea, cramps.

More Information

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Information Leaflet

Always read the patient information leaflet before commencing treatment.


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