FDA Approves Novartis's Famvir
Famvir is an antiviral drug.
It slows the growth and spread of the herpes virus so that the body can fight off the infection. Famvir will not cure herpes, but it can lessen the symptoms of the infections.
Famvir is used to treat infections caused by herpes viruses. Illnesses caused by herpes viruses include genital herpes, cold sores, shingles, and chicken pox.
FAMVIR (famiclovir) tablets is a prescription antiviral medicine used for the treatment or suppression of recurrent genital herpes or treatment of recurrent cold sores in patients with healthy immune systems; treatment of shingles; or treatment of herpes simplex infections of the skin and mucosa in HIV-infected patients.
Famciclovir is used to treat infections caused by certain types of viruses. It treats shingles caused by herpes zoster. It also treats outbreaks of herpes simplex that cause cold sores around the mouth, sores around the anus, and genital herpes. In people with frequent outbreaks of genital herpes, famciclovir is used to help reduce the number of future episodes.
Famciclovir is an antiviral drug. However, it is not a cure for these infections. The viruses that cause these infections continue to live in the body even between outbreaks. Famciclovir decreases the severity and length of these outbreaks. It helps the sores heal faster, keeps new sores from forming, and decreases pain/itching. This medication may also help reduce how long pain remains after the sores heal. In addition, in people with a weakened immune system, famciclovir can decrease the risk of the virus spreading to other parts of the body and causing serious infections.
Why is Famvir prescribed?
Famvir tablets are used to treat herpes zoster, commonly referred to as "shingles," in adults. Shingles is a painful rash with raised, red pimples on the trunk of the body, usually the back. Because it is caused by the same virus that causes chickenpox, only people who have had chickenpox can get shingles. When prescribed for shingles, Famvir works best in people age 50 or over.
Famvir is also prescribed to treat attacks of genital herpes and to prevent future flare-ups. For people with HIV infections, it is used as a treatment for both genital and oral herpes.
Most important fact about Famvir
Famvir is most effective if started within the first 48 hours after shingles first appears; treatment should be started at the first sign or symptom of genital herpes. Famvir treatment may not be effective if it is delayed more than 72 hours after the herpes zoster rash first appears or more than 6 hours after genital herpes becomes evident. Thus, it is important to see your doctor as soon as possible after symptoms appear.