How does it work?
This cream contains the active ingredient aciclovir, which is an antiviral medicine. It is used to treat skin infections with the herpes simplex virus, for example cold sores and genital herpes (caused by herpes simplex virus types 1 and 2).
Aciclovir works by stopping the herpes simplex virus from reproducing and infecting more cells.
Aciclovir is converted to a more active form inside cells of the body that are infected with herpes simplex. The activated aciclovir then works by blocking the action of a viral enzyme called DNA polymerase.
The herpes virus needs the DNA polymerase enzyme to copy its genetic material from RNA to DNA. This process is necessary for the virus to multiply and continue to survive. By blocking the action of DNA polymerase, aciclovir prevents the herpes virus from multiplying. This controls the infection and helps the immune system to deal with it.
For recurrent infections aciclovir cream is most effective if treatment is started as soon as the first signs of the infection begin to reappear.
What is it used for?
Genital herpes (herpes simplex infection)
Herpes simplex infections of the skin, eg cold sores
Avoid contact with the eyes.
This preparation is for external use only.
This cream is not suitable for application to mucous membranes such as inside the mouth, eye or vagina, as it may be irritant to these areas.
Wash your hands before and after applying the cream and avoid touching sores unnecessarily, with either hands or towels, to avoid spreading the infection.
This medicine is not recommended for the treatment of infections in people whose immune systems have a decreased ability to fight infections (immunocompromised people, for example people with AIDS or people who have had a bone marrow transplant). These people should consult their doctor concerning the treatment of infections so that the most effective treatment can be prescribed.
Not to be used in
Known sensitivity or allergy to any ingredient
This medicine should not be used if you are allergic to one or any of its ingredients. Please inform your doctor or pharmacist if you have previously experienced such an allergy.
If you feel you have experienced an allergic reaction, stop using this medicine and inform your doctor or pharmacist immediately.
Pregnancy and Breastfeeding
Certain medicines should not be used during pregnancy or breastfeeding. However, other medicines may be safely used in pregnancy or breastfeeding providing the benefits to the mother outweigh the risks to the unborn baby. Always inform your doctor if you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy, before using any medicine.
This medicine should be used with caution during pregnancy, and only if the expected benefit to the mother is greater than any possible risk to the foetus. Seek medical advice from your doctor.
This medicine may pass into breast milk, but in such small quantities that it is unlikely to harm the baby. Seek medical advice from your doctor before breastfeeding.
Medicines and their possible side effects can affect individual people in different ways. The following are some of the side effects that are known to be associated with this medicine. Because a side effect is stated here, it does not mean that all people using this medicine will experience that or any side effect.
Allergic inflammation of the skin (contact dermatitis)
Stinging or burning at the area of application
Itching at the area of application
Drying of skin in area of use
Flushing of the skin due to widening of the small blood vessels (erythema)
The side effects listed above may not include all of the side effects reported by the drug's manufacturer.
For more information about any other possible risks associated with this medicine, please read the information provided with the medicine or consult your doctor or pharmacist.
How can this medicine affect other medicines?
There are no significant interactions reported with this medicine.