Viral Infections

  • Author: Jin S. Suh, MD, FACP; Humberto R. Jimenez, PharmD, BCPS, AAHIVP (More Info)
  • Editors in Chief: Daniel R. Kuritzkes, MD; Joseph J. Eron, Jr., MD
  • Last Reviewed: 8/1/21 (What's New)


  • Acyclovir significantly reduces pain and shortens the duration of viral shedding, duration of new lesion formation, time to crusting of lesions, and time to complete healing[Meyers 1982]
  • Oral valacyclovir or oral famciclovir also may be used in uncomplicated cases (Table 3) (Management Guidelines)[CDC OI]
  • All patients with disseminated disease, multidermatomal zoster, or involvement of the ophthalmic division of the trigeminal nerve should receive IV acyclovir within 1 week of rash onset, if possible, or any time before full crusting of lesions[CDC OI]

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