Aciclovir 800mg Dispersible Tablets
PATIENT INFORMATION LEAFLET
Read all of this leaflet carefully before you start taking this medicine because it contains important information for you.
• Keep this leaflet. You may need to read it again.
• If you have any further questions, please ask your doctor or pharmacist.
• This medicine has been prescribed for you only. Do not pass it on to others. It may harm them, even if their signs of illness are the same as yours.
• If you get any side effects, talk to your doctor. This includes any possible side effects not listed in this leaflet. (See Section 4).
j What Aciclovir is and what it is used for 0 Possible side effects
2 What you need to know before you take Aciclovir Q How to store Aciclovir
3 How to take Aciclovir □ Contents of the pack and other information
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What Aciclovir is and what it is used for
Aciclovir 800mg Dispersible Tablets (referred to as Aciclovir throughout this leaflet) belongs to a group of medicines called antivirals.
Aciclovir can be used:
■ to treat shingles (herpes zoster infections)
■ to treat chickenpox (varicella infections)
What you need to know before you take Aciclovir
■ if you are allergic (hypersensitive) to aciclovir, valaciclovir or any of the other ingredients in these tablets (see Section 6 "Contents of the pack and other information").
■ If you are taking other nephrotoxic medicines (medicines that may cause kidney failure) such as cyclosporin and tacrolimus (See "Other medicines and Aciclovir" section)
■ If you suffer from kidney problems [including if you have dialysis therapy] (as you may need a lower dose of aciclovir - see Section 3 "How to take aciclovir")
■ If you are elderly (as you may need a lower dose of aciclovir - see Section 3 "How to take aciclovir")
■ If you have a severely low immune system and need to have this medicine over a long period of time or in repeated doses
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking, have recently taken or might take any other medicines, including medicines obtained without a prescription. This includes herbal medicines.
Medicines which may interact with Aciclovir:
■ Probenecid (used to treat gout)
■ Cimetidine (used to reduce stomach acid)
■ Mycophenolate mofetil (used to prevent transplant rejection)
■ Medicines which may affect the kidneys e.g. cyclosporin, tacrolimus (nephrotoxic medicines)
■ Theophylline (used to treat breathing problems, such as asthma)
It is important that you drink plenty of fluids while you are taking Aciclovir to prevent you becoming dehydrated, especially if you are elderly, suffer from kidney problems, receiving Aciclovir via injection or are taking a high dose of
If you are pregnant or breast-feeding, think you may be pregnant or are planning to have a baby, ask your doctor for advice before taking this medicine.
Aciclovir is not likely to affect you being able to drive or use machinery. However, if you experience any difficulty or symptoms, it may be necessary to avoid driving or operating machinery or pursuing any activity in which full attention is required.
How to take Aciclovir
Always take this medicine exactly as your doctor has told you. Check with your doctor or pharmacist if you are not sure.
■ These tablets are to be taken orally, dissolved in at least 50mls of water or swallowed whole with a glass of water.
■ The score line is not intended for breaking the tablet
■ 800mg five times a day for 7 days at approximately 4 hour intervals (leaving out the night time dose)
■ For patients with a severely low immune system or those suffering from gut absorption problems, dosing via injection may be considered
■ Treatment of shingles should start as soon as possible after the start of the rash
■ Treatment of chickenpox in patients with a low immune system should start within 24 hours after the start of the rash
■ 6 years and over: 800mg four times a day for 5 days
■ 800mg two times a day at approximately 12 hour intervals for patients suffering from severe kidney problems
■ 800mg three times a day at approximately 8 hour intervals for patients suffering from moderate kidney problems
It is especially important if you are elderly, suffering from kidney problems or are taking a high dose of Aciclovir that you drink plenty of fluids.
If you accidentally take too many tablets, contact your doctor or nearest hospital emergency department immediately for advice. Remember to take this leaflet or any remaining tablets with you.
Symptoms of overdose include: feeling and/or being sick, headache, confusion, seeing or hearing things that are not real (hallucinations), feeling agitated, fits, loss of consciousness/coma.
If you forget to take Aciclovir
Take it as soon as you remember, unless it is time for your next dose.
If you miss a dose do not take a double dose to make up for a forgotten dose.
If you have any further questions on the use of this medicine, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
Possible side effects
Like all medicines, Aciclovir can cause side effects although not everybody gets them.
Seek medical advice immediately if you develop the following symptoms:
■ Allergic reactions: skin rashes, itching, swelling of the face, tongue or throat, breathlessness, difficulty in breathing, dizziness
Common side effects: (may affect up to 1 in 10 people)
■ Feeling sick (nausea) or being sick (vomiting)
■ Stomach pains
■ Severe itching (pruritus), skin rashes
■ Abnormal sensitivity of the skin to sunlight (photosensitivity)
■ Tiredness (fatigue)
Uncommon side effects: (may affect up to 1 in 100
■ Red, raised, itchy skin rash (urticaria)
■ Hair loss (alopecia)
Rare side effects: (may affect up to 1 in 1,000 people):
■ Shortness of breath (dyspnoea)
■ Increases in bilirubin and liver-related enzymes (reversible)
■ Swelling of the deeper layers of the skin caused by a build-up of fluid (angioedema)
■ Effects on blood and urine tests
Very rare side effects: (may affect up to 1 in 10,000 people)
■ Shakiness (tremors)
■ Lack of voluntary co-ordination of muscle movements (ataxia)
■ Difficulty with speech (dysarthria)
■ Mental health problems
■ Sleepiness (somnolence)
■ Disorder of the brain (encephalopathy)
The side effects listed above are generally reversible and usually reported in patients with kidney problems or with other pre-existing factors (See Section 2, "Warnings and precautions").
■ Looking pale and feeling tired (anaemia)
■ A reduction in blood platelets, which increases risk of bleeding or bruising (thrombocytophenia)
■ A reduction in white blood cells (leukopenia)
■ Inflammation of the liver (hepatitis)
■ Yellowing of the skin or whites of the eyes (jaundice)
■ Kidney problems, failure or pain
If you get any side effects, talk to your doctor or pharmacist. This includes any possible side effects not listed in this leaflet. You can also report side effects directly via the internet at www.mhra.gov.uk/yellowcard. By reporting side effects you can help provide more information on the safety of this medicine.
How to store Aciclovir
■ Keep this medicine out of the sight and reach of children.
■ Do not use this medicine after the expiry date which is stated on the blister/carton after "EXP". The expiry date refers to the last day of that month.
■ Do not store above 25°C.
■ Store in original package.
■ Do not throw away any medicines via wastewater or household waste. Ask your pharmacist how to throw away medicines you no longer use.
These measures will help to protect the environment.
Contents of the pack and other Information
■ Each dispersible tablet contains 800mg of active ingredient aciclovir
■ The other ingredients are potato starch, gelatin, microcrystalline cellulose, sodium starch glycollate, sodium stearyl fumerate and colloidal anhydrous silica
What Aciclovir looks like and contents of the pack
Aciclovir 800mg: white or almost white, capsuleshaped, convex, scored tablets of 9mm x 19mm, coded 'HG 800' on one side
Aciclovir is available in packs of 35.
Tillomed Laboratories Ltd 3 Howard Road,
Cambridgeshire PE198ET United Kingdom
Aciclovir 800mg Dispersible Tablets PL 11311/0203
Date of last revision: December 2013