What is the treatment for Cold Sores and Fever Blisters?

By  , Expert Content
Feb 15, 2011

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There is no permanent cure for cold sores. However you may be prescribed certain drugs which can be useful in their treatment and prevention.


Oral antiviral medications: The antiviral medications that are mostly prescribed for cold sores include acyclovir, famciclovir, and valacyclovir. These medications do not eliminate the inactive HSV-1 infection, but help the sores to heal more rapidly and ease the pain and discomfort associated with it. They can suppress cold-sore outbreaks during periods of increased susceptibility such as stress or prolonged exposure to sunlight. It has been noted in some studies that valacyclovir before certain dental procedures can reduce recurrent outbreaks.


Topical antiviral creams and ointments, such as penciclovir cream and acyclovir ointment are used as well. Penciclovir cream has been shown to reduce the average size and duration of a cold sore. It is most effective when used immediately after the symptoms (pain, tingling, itching, burning or blisters) start. A topical acyclovir ointment is useful for HSV infections of the skin, mucous membranes, and genitals.


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