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Hello! My brother had shingles some time ago. It was difficult time for him (and us) but he is fine now. His doctor prescribed Zovirax (acyclovir) 800mg and he had used it for ten days. We still have a bottle for Zovirax left at home. I heard that Zovirax tablets 800mg reduce the incidence of common cold. I don't know whether this is true or not. Since I often catch cold maybe this will help. Should I try it?

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Hi! Zovirax (acyclovir) is a synthetic drug used in treatment of herpes zoster (shingles), initial and recurrent episodes of genital herpes and chickenpox (varicella). As you can see it is used only in treatment against herpes viruses. I have never heard that someone used this medicine in order to reduce the incidence of common cold. You are wrong if you think if it is used against herpes viruses it should be good against other viruses too. It doesn't work that way.
You should be careful when taking any medicine and consult your doctor first. Zovirax is a serious medicine with many possible adverse reactions and you should not take it just like that.
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I have had recurrent shingles for a long time, so my Doctor prescribed Aciclovir as a prophelatic (preventative drug) for a 3 month period. In normal times, I take 3 x 200mg daily. When symptoms are coming, I take 5 x 200mg daily.

Since I have been taking the drug in this way, I have not had a single common cold, while everyone around me at work without fail has caught the winter snivvles. Furthermore, there were two days where I forgot to take the drug, and I felt a cold coming on in my head/at the very top of my nose. Then, upon taking 2 x 200mg Aciclovir, the symptoms literally vanished within a day.

While I would not ever recommend taking drugs unecessarily, I cannot deny my observations that Aciclovir seems to prevent and help shorten the efeects of a common cold. Given that this is an antiviral (not antibiotic) medicine and the common cold is a virus, it seems entirely logical to me.

I hope this is helpful.
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.. my mum read about this possible "cold cure" side-effect in the newspaper about 5 years ago, and passed on the tip. You never see this mentioned in newspapers now, but the fact is, since I started rubbing a bit of zovirax (acyclovir) cream into my nose whenever I felt the onset of a cold/flu , it would NEARLY ALWAYS prevent the illness developing. I used to get one flu at least and about a dozen colds, every year, from the age of 15 up till about 40. Then I started this, and in that time, I have hardly had any flus or colds. My mum also hardly ever gets colds any more. My theory is that this is known about or at least suspected in the pharmacological scientific community, but that this info is suppressed because they are worried not because people might be abusing the drug, but really because there is a risk the viruses mutate to be resistant to it, so another essential medicine will become useless, like a lot of antibiotics. But it definitely works, it is not a placebo ! All you need is a tiny bit of the cream; there is no need to trowel it on. Zovirax usually comes in 2g cream tubes, by small amount I mean about 1/20 of the tube, so one tiny tube is enough for 20 treatments. If I feel as if the cold-coming-on feeling isn't going, I sometimes repeat the treatment up to 3 times a day, but most of the time this is not needed and a single tiny amount, rubbed into the nose and around the nostrils (where the skin is thin and take-up of the chemical into the bloodstream is higher) is enough to prevent a cold coming on. Now, I say "cold" but the fact is there are thousands of viruses out there which produce a combination of symptoms of sore throat, classic common cold runny nose and sneezing, and flu. so many they are unknown to science so doctors just refer to them as "3-day viruses." So what I am saying is that this stuff seems to be effective against most 3-day viruses. I have no proof, other than the fact that I know it has worked on me in the last 5 years.
One more tip.. For about 4 years, this stuff prevented most colds, but I still got one or two, but nowhere near as many as before. However in the last year or so, I have had *no* colds or 3-day viruses. The difference is that for about a year I've been nearly teetotal. My theory is that even a small amount of alcohol reduces the body's ability to resist this kind of infection.
My 3%, for what it's worth.
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I have used this during a cold and it has brought immediate recovery. I don't think doctors are allowed to vouch for this because of the risks but my experience has brought immediate recovery. I would like to know what's in that make the cold disappear.
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Is this just your theory or are you a doctor? A virus is a virus whether its herpes, common cold or influenza virus...and i would believe an antiviral is an antiviral and would kill Any and all viruses...is this not true? Or are you infact a practitioner that believes every separate little virus and illness requires a new prescription and its own separate Dr office visit so as to pad the pockets of docs and pharm companies? Just curious.

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I think you hit the nail on the head...practitioners get pissed off and have a real problem with ppl self diagnosing and self medicating because they (docs) are the ones that spent all that time and money on a doctorate and take offense to being told how to do their job by some lowly uneducated layman.
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Different viruses/bacteria are structurally different and function and replicate in different ways, so they have to be targeted in different ways to be effectively killed. Using the wrong antibiotic could actually make a person sicker (or even kill them!) due to the nature of the type of the cell wall of certain types of bacteria. Different antimicrobial drugs target dufferent susepitble parts of the microorganism, whether that's the cell wall, the flagella, the capsid, the metabolic processes, etc, so it really can make a difference which drug for which virus/bacteria.

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I also believe it can work on a cold and considering how it works, in theory, it should. The drug isolates the virus and stops it spreading through the dna to cause more symptoms which therefore stops it in its tracks.
I was taking a steady 200mg a day for years and whenever a cold hit, all I would get was thr tickley cough for a couple of hours and that was it. Obviously can't prove it but I'm going to start it up again after a recent cold virus caused a nasty infection and see if it helps
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I just started using it for Herpes and now Shingles but I've caught a cold while I was in the middle of a 10 day course. It's a chest cold and it's not developing or getting worse like it normally would. Just to comment on your comments - the way it was explained to me, an antiviral actually stops the symptoms but doesn't actually kill the virus like antibiotic does for bacteria.

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I have just finished a course of antiviral for shingles a couple of weeks ago. Then I started getting a sore throat yesterday afternoon. Usualyy I have the sore throat for a week before any nasal symptoms appear, but the nasal symptoms have already started and I don't, so far, feel anywhere near as sick as usual. That said, from what I've read, you certainly wouldn't take it to prevent a cold, although given how severely sick I've been getting with them, it would be tempting.
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I have been given acyclovir to help treat a viral chest infection I had which turned in to post viral fatigue and labrynthitis. My doctor said it is primarIly used for herpes simplex but can also help with over 100 other viruses (so whoever wrote that it won't treat anything else is just plain wrong). I tried it and the labrynthitis has almost disappeared and I'm feeling much better generally. I can't vouch for the common cold, but I do intend to keep taking it to prevent another flare up of my virus (which floors me each time).
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It’s designed to stop reproduction of the Herpes Virus and allows your Immune system to fight into remission ... it could do the same for a cold keeps the viral load down while your body fights it off you become semptomatic when the colds Viral load is too high... I’m no Doc but makes sense to me.
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Ive been on 800mg 5x a day for almost a week amd have come down with the worst case of the flu ive ever had. Im going with it's not effective.
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There are different classes of antivirals. Some only target specific RNA sequences so they only work on viruses which contain those sequences. So no, your assumption is not correct.
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