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Precautions and Warnings With Acyclovir Ointment

Precautions and warnings with acyclovir ointment to be aware of prior to taking it include the fact that it is not intended to be used to treat herpes infections of the eye. Also, the medication cannot prevent an outbreak of genital herpes or cold sores; nor can it cure these conditions. Precautions and warnings with acyclovir ointment also extend to people with certain allergies and women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Acyclovir Ointment: What Should I Tell My Healthcare Provider?

You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking acyclovir ointment (Zovirax® ointment) if you:
 
  • Have any allergies, including allergies to food, dyes, or preservatives
  • Are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant
  • Are breastfeeding.
     
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about all of the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
 

Specific Precautions and Warnings With Acyclovir Ointment

Warnings and precautions to be aware of prior to taking acyclovir ointment include the following:
 
  • The medication is not intended for use in the eyes and should not be used to treat herpes infections of the eye.
     
  • There is no evidence that acyclovir ointment prevents the spread of cold sores or genital herpes to other people. Also, it will not help prevent an outbreak of cold sores or genital herpes.
     
  • Acyclovir ointment will not cure genital herpes. You should avoid sexual contact while having an outbreak (or if you think you are about to have an outbreak). You should always use condoms, as genital herpes can be spread at any time.
     
  • The medication should be started as soon as possible after the first signs of genital herpes or cold sores, as it is most effective when taken early in the course of the infection.
     
  • Acyclovir ointment is considered a pregnancy Category B medication. This means that it is probably safe for use during pregnancy. Talk to your healthcare provider about the risks and benefits of using the drug while pregnant (see Zovirax Ointment and Pregnancy).
     
  • It is unlikely that acyclovir ointment applied to the skin can pass through breast milk. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start, discuss this with your healthcare provider prior to taking the drug (see Zovirax Ointment and Breastfeeding).
     

Acyclovir (Zovirax) Ointment

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