One of the most common treatments for shingles, or herpes zoster is aclyclovir, or a medication that in a class of antiviral medications called synthetic nucleoside analogues. This particular chemical works by halting the expansion and growth of the herpes virus in the body. Shingles is an adult derivative of the chicken pox virus that many people contract as young children.
While aclyclovir can help many people with shingles symptoms, it is not always effective for everyone and can have some side effects that are noteworthy. A few years back, my wife came down with a severe case of shingles located about her neck and face, and the aclyclovir seemed to have no effect whatsoever.
The following precautions should be considered and reviewed with your physician before taking aclyclovir:
Tell your doctor if you are allergic to acyclovir, Valtrex, or any other medicines that have similar ingredients as found in aclylovir. You can check with your pharmacist for a list of the particular ingredients.
Be sure to carefully make a list of any vitamins, medications, herbal remedies, and nutritional supplements that you are presently taking, or plan to take.
There may be medications that react adversely with aclyclovir, so it is important that your physician be able to make proper decisions based upon this information.
Have your doctor determine if you are dehydrated from any recent illness. It is important to be fully hydrated when taking this medication.
Be sure to tell your doctor whether or not you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, if you are breast-feeding, or if you happen to become pregnant while taking the medication.
The side effects can be somewhat uncomfortable and may include: vomiting, upset stomach, dizziness, diarrhea, agitation, hair loss, joint pain, tiredness, and changes in vision.
More serious side effects can include: hives, rash or blisters, difficulty in breathing, itching, weakness, swelling of the face, throat, tongue or eyes, fast or rapid heartbeat, unusual bleeding or bruising, blood in the urine, headaches, stomach cramps, fevers or sore throat, confusion, hallucination, seizures, loss of consciousness, uncontrollable shaking and difficulty speaking.
I don’t know about you, but it seems to me that some of the side effects might be as serious, if not more serious than the disease itself. My wife, who took this medication for about a month did not experience any of these side effects, except for a general feeling of tiredness and malaise. However, she had absolutely no help in relieving any of the symptoms of shingles.
She had large, painful blisters and sores all over her neck, scalp and face. We were told that shingles in these areas are cause for concern, as there is danger that it can spread to the eyes and brain.
Fortunately, we were referred to a wonderful Naturopathic practitioner who prescribed a natural regimen of diet and herbal remedies. Remarkably, my wife’s condition began to improve after only 5 days of being on the treatment. Needless to say, we were overjoyed, as her turnaround was so remarkable.
If you are like us, the prospect from all of the side effects from any drug really makes us shy away from such potentially harmful substances. If a natural process has the same or better result, that’s the way we want to go. The whole process works from the inside out, and worked the best for us.