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Docosanol (On the skin)

Docosanol (doe-KOE-sa-nol)

Treats fever blisters and cold sores caused by herpes simplex. This medicine is an antiviral.

Brand Name(s):

Abreva

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:

You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to docosanol.

How to Use This Medicine:

Cream

  • Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to apply and how often. Do not use more medicine or apply it more often than your doctor tells you to. Start using this medicine at the first sign of a cold sore or fever blister (pain, burning, tingling).
  • This medicine is for use on the lips and face only and will not treat genital herpes. Do not apply it near your eyes or on your genitals.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water before and after using this medicine.
  • Apply a thin layer to the affected area. Rub it in gently and thoroughly.
  • Never share your medicine with anyone.

If a dose is missed:

  • If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, apply it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to apply the medicine and skip the missed dose.
  • Do not apply extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine:

  • Store the medicine at room temperature, away from heat and direct light. Do not freeze.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid:

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

Warnings While Using This Medicine:

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Headache
  • Skin rash or increased redness

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088


Last Updated: 12/4/2014


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