Acyclovir and Valtrex are anti-herpetic drugs with a proven efficacy and safety that are widely used to treat herpes. In general, both drugs have approximately the same selective activity against herpes simplex viruses and have the same therapeutic effect.
When choosing an antiviral drug, many compare Valtrex vs Acyclovir, to understand what is the difference between them and which of the drugs is more effective.
It should be understood that the use of any anti-herpetic drugs does not help to completely get rid of the herpes virus. However, they can help to increase the duration of remission period of herpetic infection and to alleviate its symptoms.
Typically, when choosing Acyclovir vs Valtrex, people adhere to such criteria, as the form of release, efficacy and tolerability of the drug. Not the least role is also played by the cost of the anti-herpetic drug.
Acyclovir is an international non-proprietary name, under which a large number of anti-herpetic drugs are produced. To treat herpesvirus infection, you can use Acyclovir in the form of:
- 5% topical ointment;
- 200 mg/5ml oral suspension;
- 200 mg, 400mg, 800 mg oral tablets and capsules.
Unlike Acyclovir (the name of the active ingredient), Valtrex is a proprietary trade name. Valtrex contains the active ingredient Valacyclovir.
Antiherpetic agent Valacyclovir differs from Acyclovir through the fact that it has a higher bioavailability and solubility. Getting into the human body, Valacyclovir interacts with the enzyme ValacyclovirHydrolase and completely turns into Acyclovir.
In fact, Valtrex (Valacyclovir) is a valine ester of acyclovir, that is, a prodrug. High bioavailability and rapid solubility of Valtrex makes it possible to achieve the required concentration of the drug in the blood and reduce the frequency of administration.
Valtrex is available in the form of 250 mg, 500 mgand 1000 mg film-coated tablets.
Just like Acyclovir, Valtrex is prescribedto pediatric patients and adults for the treatment of:
- Genital Herpes;
- Chickenpox (varicella);
- Herpes Zoster (shingles);
- Cold Sores (herpes labialis).
Valtrex can also be used to prevent cytomegalovirus infection and disease in organ transplantation.
Drugs inhibit the activity of the virus, prevent its reproduction and the formation of lesions on the skin and mucous membranes. At that, to eliminate eruptions in exacerbations of genital herpes,
- Acyclovir must be taken 5 times a day.
- Valtrex is used only 2times at day.
In the treatment of severe episodes of herpes zoster and varicella, studies have shown the same efficacy of Acyclovir and Valtrex. At the same time, when comparing Valtrex vs Acyclovir, it is established that Valtrex:
- Contributes to a more rapid decrease in pain.
- Effectively reduces the frequency of postherpetic neuralgia.
One of the main advantages of Valtrex vs Acyclovir is a lower frequency of use, which increases adherence of patientsto treatment and reduces the likelihood of side effects.
Moreover, compared to Acyclovir, Valtrex is characterized by better tolerability. At that, the price of two similar anti-herpetic drugs may differ by several times.