Recently switched meds from Valtrex to Famvir. So far I'm having much better results with the Famvir, but nothing's perfect and I'm fighting a mild outbreak.
Wondering if anyone out there is taking a suppressive dose of Famvir -- if so, what dosage was recommended to you for when you have an outbreak while on suppressive therapy? My MD prescribed an extra 250mg tablet per day until symptoms are gone -- not sure how I'll going to space the extra dosage out.
Also curious about your overall success with this med.
I'm on Famvir, but not as a suppressive thearpy just because it's so darn expensive, even with insurance coverage. I only take it when I start to experience an outbreak. My doctor said that once I start to have symptoms, I should take 1000 mg for 3-4 days, then drop down to 500 mg until the symptoms are gone. But he said as a suppressive therapy, the 250mg tabs should work quite well.
So 1000 mg for an outbreak, drop to 500 mg after a couple of days, and for suppressive 250 mg.
Thanks, BadMalibu and Pinky&TheBrain for your replies.
The Famvir is working better for me in the way of a HUGE decrease in outbreaks. I was on a suppressive dose of Valtrex and it simply wasn't working (I was having constant outbreaks for close to a year). The theory is that I have an acyclovir-resistant strain of HSV 2, which is why the Valtrex wasn't helping much.
Obviously, this type of thing is highly individual -- just depends on how you respond to a med based on your situation.
There is one downside to my switching...Famvir is not approved for continuous use over 1 year. So, I'm going to have to go on and off and use episodic treatment at some point.
y personal experience with antiviral drugs has been bad altogether, although like I always say--everyone is different. The thing that has helped me the most is boosting my immune system with a healthy diet of lean meats, fresh fruits and veggies, rice and healthy whole grains. Along with a good diet that also includes plenty of hydration, I stay away from certain things that are notorious for causing outbreaks including Aspartame, Saccharin, Splenda, MSG, and artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives. It's not a perfect diet seeing that I just snuck a bunch of chocolate chips (hehe), but I really try not to eat icky, processed food. I also take lots of Vitamin C and have had positive benefits by eating fresh garlic AND taking enteric coated garlic pills. Garlic is a very potent antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal. Oil of Oregano and Olive Leaf Extract are also strong antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal herbs but I haven't tried those yet. I spray my genital region with hydrogen peroxide when I feel an OB coming on as it helps to ward it off, and I use Tea Tree Oil (diluted), which helps heal sores VERY quickly. Valtrex came me EXTREME vertigo and Acyclovir (Zovirax) gave me constant prodromal symptoms and actually WORSENED my OB's! I wasn't sure if it was at first so I stopped it for a while and then tried it again and sure enough I got a bad OB. I still have a pretty active case of herpes, but TIME is what made them less severe and SOMEWHAT less frequenht. Only after about 7 months did my outbreaks even improve a little bit. Anyway, sorry I can't offer you any info on Famvir; I gave up after Zov. and Valtrex! Good luck.
This past week I've been feeling much better having switched from Valtrex to Famvir for treatment. I was given Famvir during my primary outbreak late August and my symptoms were not that severe and all cleared up 100% in less than 3 weeks. However, I had another OB about 9-10 days after that only this time I was given Valtrex. My Dr. recommended that I try Valtrex for episodic treatment and see how it goes. Well, this recurrent OB so soon after the primary one, lasted longer with the symptoms (sores) being much worse and I also broke out in a different area as well (that I didn't the first time). Then before I was even healed from the 2nd OB (which lasted approx. 23 days) I was already heading in to another OB (which I am now completely healed from as of this past Sunday) and again took Valtrex (the 3rd OB lasted 10-12 days).
In any case, I was worried I would get another OB since my immune system is clearly not in the greatest working order (fyi - since mid August I've been taking vitamin and mineral supplements, etc. - which didn't seem to have much impact - though haven't tried OOO or OLE....YET). I requested from my Dr. a prescription for Famvir as a more suppressive type treatment to see what would happen....so far, it's been 5 days on the Famvir with 2 more days left, taking one 250 mg tablet twice a day and I've not had or even felt like I'm going to have another OB. I've been feeling pretty darn good these past 6 days and I gotta tell ya, it feels awesome! I was pretty bummed out there these past several weeks. It seems my body reacts in a much better way to Famvir than to Valtrex....yes it's more expensive but if this is what works for me right now, it's a bonus! I hope after the Famvir is gone (which is in 2 days) I stay OB free...even for a little while....that would be so great. If I don't, than Famvir is likely the suppressive med. for me as well.
Will keep ya'll posted!
Oh and by the way....happy Friday peeps!!
Last edited by CloudySkies; 10-12-2006 at 11:42 PM.
Well, I've gotta say that Famvir is really working well for me. In fact, it's like night and day compared to the Valtrex. With the Valtrex just about everything would trigger an outbreak (certain foods, stress, sex...) and the outbreaks were pretty severe. With the Famvir, triggers don't 'trigger' as much and whatever outbreak symptoms I've had have been very mild.
Since I'm having some success with the Famvir I've decided to switch from a suppressive dose to an episodic dose and see if I can get away with it. I'm also attempting to switch the dosage type since Famvir isn't recommended for long-term suppressive use (over 1 year), as I mentioned in an earlier post. Wish me luck.
1badgirl, I mentioned in another post a while ago that I was told that I might have an 'acyclovir-resistant' strain of herpes, which is why the Valtrex might not have been working. And, I was also told that you can have a 'sensitivity test' done, which can tell you if your herpes is resistant to a particular drug.
After taking that supply of Famvir in early October (even though I was over my OB at that time, I was given the prescription as more of a "just in case" as I had experienced two OB's that were worse than they should have been even after taking Valtrex before sores even appeared) I still remain OB free! The famvir I took for 10 days in case my body was going to have an OB again...the Dr. figured I should take it and see how things go. Well so far so good...no OB since around mid September. I also take supplements daily and make sure not to forget to take them (one good quality multivitamin X1 day, 1500 mgs of Lysine per day, Garlic Oil tablets x3 a day, Evening Primerose Oil 4-6 500 mg tablets a day, Vitamin E once a day, Calcium Magnesium tabs 1-2 a day and Vitamin C chewables x2 a day). I should also mentioned that I've drastically cut splenda and artificial sweetener in general out of my diet, as well as peanuts and caffeine - coffee. I still eat tomatoes once in a while and treat myself to chocolate or pastries but only as a "treat" - maybe once a week, if that. Anyway, since that 10 days of Famvir as a preventative method and still taking my supplements, I remain OB free - and my period just came and went over a week ago and no OB (which I was worried about since so many women who especially are first diagnosed seem to have trouble around their cycle). I have to say my fingers are crossed and I'm hoping this continues!!
I honestly believe the Famvir had much to do with this....had I taken Valtrex again I have this strong feeling I would have had another OB. I will definitely be taking Famvir should I require meds again....NOT Valtrex.
Last edited by CloudySkies; 11-04-2006 at 01:16 PM.