- Side Effects
- Patient Information Leaflet
What is Famciclovir
Medications known as antivirals such as famciclovir will help to ease the uncomfortable and often embarrassing nature of a genital herpes outbreak, whilst also reducing the severity and length of it as well. Such treatments work on groups of similar conditions as in the case of oral and genital herpes, as well as shingles, and they can help to stop the virus being so active within the body thus potentially reducing the number of episodes a patient may experience.
What is contained in Famciclovir?
Each tablet has the required dose of the active ingredient famciclovir along with the following inactive ingredients:
- hydroxypropyl cellulose
- hydroxypropyl methylcellulose
- magnesium stearate
- polyethene glycols
- sodium starch glycolate
- titanium dioxide.
Please let the doctor know if you are lactose intolerant.
How does Famciclovir work?
Famciclovir falls into a family of drugs known as nucleotides which are agents used against a number of viral infections, including hepatitis B and C, as well as HIV and herpes. They are antimetabolites which incorporate into the DNA of a virus and terminate its growth pattern, thus suppressing it and slowing down the regularity or severity of outbreaks and, in some cases, stopping them altogether.
How long can I take Famciclovir for?
When being used to lower the severity of an outbreak, famciclovir is usually taken twice a day for one day, with the course beginning as early as possible after the first signs of an outbreak which may include a tingle or itchy sensation on the affected area. If possible, it is best to take the first tablet within 6 hours of this initial symptom.
In patients suffering from 6 or more outbreaks a year and therefore being prescribed a suppressive dose, famciclovir is generally taken twice a day for up to a year, though this would be discussed with your GP or Click Pharmacy doctor.
Why choose Famciclovir?
The class of drug which famciclovir is found in stops the spread of herpes in the body by preventing the virus from replicating its own DNA, which it needs to do to spread and, in turn, cause a flare-up. Famciclovir has a longer duration of action which means that it can be taken less often and still keep the required, effective level of the active drug in the system.
Another reason Famciclovir is a good choice for many people is that it is the generic version of the original branded version. This means it has the same bioequivalence, containing the same active substance (famciclovir) in the same dosage, with the same administration route - in this case, oral - but for a lower cost.
How should I take Famciclovir?
It is important to read the patient information leaflet before taking any medication and always follow the advice of your doctor. If you have any questions or concerns before beginning the treatment, then the doctors at Click Pharmacy are at hand to speak to you online at any time. You will be advised as to how many tablets to take each day and for how long, depending on your situation and medical condition.
Famciclovir can be taken with or without food and works best when taken evenly throughout the day, as this ensures the level of the drug remains constant in your system.
If you find that you experience any issues from taking this medication, then contact your GP or Click Pharmacy Doctor immediately for advice.
Can I buy Famciclovir online?
Famciclovir, the treatment for genital herpes, can be easily bought online at Click Pharmacy once you have tested positive for the infection. There is a quick questionnaire to complete so our doctors can assess the suitability of this treatment and produce a prescription, after which you can make your purchase. You may prefer to book an online appointment with one of Click Pharmacy's online doctors, who can also offer advice and supply you with a prescription directly. Your order will be sent to your chosen address in discreet packaging the next working day if ordered before 3 pm.
How effective is Famciclovir in treating genital herpes?
What are the side effects of Famciclovir?
As with any medication, famciclovir can cause side effects though usually only mildly, the most common of which is a headache. Other common side effects include nausea or sickness, pain in the abdomen, diarrhoea or bloating and dizziness.
Rare but serious side effects which require immediate medical attention can include:
- kidney problems such as minimal urination and swelling of the lower limbs, along with shortness of breath
- allergic reaction symptoms, including difficulty breathing, swelling of the face, tongue or throat, hives and a rash.
- blistering of the skin
It is crucial you let your doctor know about any other medications you are currently taking, including complementary varieties and vitamins, as well as any allergies you may suffer from to ensure this drug is safe for you to take and to limit any possible side effects as much as possible.
What if I forget to take a dose?
If you miss your dose, take it as soon as you remember; however, skip the missed one if it's almost time for your next dose of famciclovir. Do not take a double dose.
What is the difference between Famciclovir and Famvir?
Famciclovir and famvir are the same drugs, with famvir being the brand name and famciclovir being the generic name. In other words, they both can be called medical equivalents as they contain the same chemical compound. Famciclovir is available in a generic form, which is cheaper than the branded version, famvir.
What is the difference between famciclovir, valaciclovir and aciclovir?
All three of these drugs are antivirals from the nucleoside analogues class. Famciclovir and aciclovir have the same mechanism of action; however, the former has a more prolonged action duration, meaning you will need to take famciclovir less frequently in a day.
Valaciclovir is a prodrug which converts it into its active form, aciclovir, inside the body. Therefore, it stays in the body for a longer duration than aciclovir and requires less frequent dosing per day.
Who can take Famvir?
Intimate your GP if you take any other medication or have preexisting conditions; this helps minimise your risk of experiencing any adverse effects from famvir. Take special caution if you are taking the following drugs:
- Probenecid (for high blood uric acid levels or gout)
- Raloxifene (for osteoporosis)
Consult your GP before taking famvir if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Be extra careful when taking famvir if you suffer from the following:
- A liver disease
- Severe lactase deficiency
- Decreased kidney function
What precautions should I take?
Taking famvir can make you dehydrated. Hence, drink plenty of fluids. Once infected, the herpes virus stays in your body and can get transferred to a partner at any time. Therefore, avoid sexual activity during outbreaks and ensure you contain the virus.
VZV, the virus responsible for shingles and chickenpox, can also easily get transferred to individuals who haven't had chickenpox or the chicken pox vaccine. Take special care so it does not spread.
What is the active ingredient in Famciclovir Tablets?
The active ingredient in Famciclovir Tablets is famciclovir. This ingredient is effective at preventing the viral infection from replicating and growing within the body.
Can pregnant or breastfeeding women use Famciclovir Tablets?
It is advised that pregnant or breastfeeding women do not use Famciclovir Tablets. This is because there is not enough research to suggest that Famciclovir is safe to use.
Will using Famciclovir Tablets affect my fertility in any way?
There is no evidence to suggest that Famciclovir Tablets affect the fertility of a male or female in any way.
Can I drive or operate machinery while using Famciclovir Tablets?
Although taking Famciclovir Tablets does not generally affect anyone’s ability to drive or operate machinery safely, it is advised to refrain from driving or operating machinery if you feel dizzy. Dizziness is a common side effect from this drug, in this case driving and operating machinery should be avoided.
Can I take Famciclovir Tablets on an empty stomach?
Famciclovir Tablets can be taken with or without food. If you experience nausea after using Famciclovir Tablets you should take them after a well balanced meal. This decreases the chances of one feeling sick.
Who should not take Famciclovir Tablets?
You should not take Famciclovir Tablets if you:
- Have an allergy to any of the ingredients
- Have problems with the way your liver functions
- Are trying to get pregnant
How long should I take Famciclovir Tablets for?
You should complete your course of Famciclovir Tablets. If you feel better you should continue to take your tablets to ensure any strains of the virus are killed in your body. This decreases the chances of re-infection.
You may experience a number of side effects from using Famciclovir Tablets. These side effects are often mild and disappear after a few uses as your body gets used to the drug. Common side effects and how to overcome symptoms include:
- Headache: drink plenty of fluids to ensure you are hydrated ad rest
- Feeling sick (nausea): you should take your medication after a healthy and well balanced meal. You should refrain from eating rich spicy foods.
- Feeling dizzy: you should rest, stay hydrated and avoid driving or operating machinery.
If any of these side effects worsen you should stop taking Famciclovir Tablets and seek medical advice as soon as possible.