There are many treatment options - It

Treatment options

There is no cure for cold sores. Cold sores are caused by the HSV-1 virus, which stays in your body throughout your lifetime. This may sound disheartening—but try not to let it discourage you. Know that your symptoms will come and go, and often, you won’t have any at all. Also know that there are many treatments available to help you manage cold sores.

Over-the-counter vs prescription treatments

OTC means "over-the-counter," so you can buy them without a prescription. No OTC products contain both anti-inflammatory and antiviral medications. While OTCs may help some people, others will need a prescription-strength treatment.

Prescription medications require you to first see your doctor. Prescription medications that are indicated to treat cold sores all contain antivirals, which attack the HSV-1 virus itself. The type of antiviral medication may be different, and can be used in different ways (eg, pill vs cream).

Oral vs topical treatments

You also have choices on how you use your treatment. There are oral prescription antivirals (taken as a pill), and topical medications (gels, creams, or ointments that you apply to the cold sore itself). Some people find applying a product to the wound itself to be soothing on the skin, while others may prefer taking a pill. Topical medications can either be OTC or prescription—but only XERESE® combines an antiviral drug and an anti-inflammatory drug. This means it fights the virus itself and reduces cold sore symptoms such as tenderness.

Oral and topical medications may have different side effects. Always talk to your doctor about your treatment options. It's important to be an active part of your care so that you can most effectively manage your cold sores.

What makes XERESE different?

  • XERESE is the first and only cold sore medication that combines an antiviral drug (acyclovir) and an
    anti-inflammatory drug (hydrocortisone) in one
    easy-to-apply cream.
  • Acyclovir blocks the cold sore virus from replicating, or copying itself. Because the virus can no longer replicate, the cold sore outbreak is shortened.
  • Hydrocortisone is a clinically proven treatment to reduce inflammation. XERESE reduces symptoms such as lesion size and tenderness.

It’s important to remember that XERESE is not a cure—there is no cure for cold sores. But, it can help treat the symptoms, reduce severity, and speed healing time in some patients.

XERESE® (acyclovir and hydrocortisone) cream 5%/1% is a prescription medicine used in patients ages 6 and older to lessen the healing time of cold sores (herpes labialis) and lessen the chance of a cold sore becoming worse (ulcerating). It should be used early, at the first sign of a cold sore.
 

Important Safety Information


INDICATION

XERESE® (acyclovir and hydrocortisone) cream 5%/1% is a prescription medicine used in patients ages 6 and older to lessen the healing time of cold sores (herpes labialis) and lessen the chance of a cold sore becoming worse (ulcerating). It should be used early, at the first sign of a cold sore.

Important safety information
  • XERESE is for cold sores on lips and around the mouth only and should not be used in eyes, mouth, nose or on genitals. Use exactly as directed by your healthcare provider.
  • XERESE is not a cure for cold sores.
  • It is not known if XERESE is safe for or works in children younger than 6 years old.
  • The safety of XERESE is unknown in women who are pregnant or breast-feeding, or in patients with a weak immune system (become sick very easily). Tell your healthcare provider about these or any other medical conditions you have before using XERESE.
  • Do not cover the cold sore or the area around the cold sore with a bandage.
  • Do not use other skin products (such as make-up, sun screen or lip balm) or other skin medicine on the cold sore or the area around the cold sore.
  • Talk to your healthcare provider if your cold sore is not better in 2 weeks.
  • The most common side effects of XERESE are: drying or flaking of the skin, tingling or burning after applying it, redness of the skin and swelling or changes in skin color where the cream is applied. These are not all the possible side effects of XERESE. Tell your healthcare provider if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

Click here for full Prescribing Information.