Compare Valtrex vs. Famvir

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Valtrex
(Valacyclovir)

Famvir
(Famciclovir)

Treats viral infections. Valtrex (Valacyclovir) is good for treating viral infections like herpes, chickenpox, and shingles. It won't cure the disease, but it'll shorten the length of a breakout.Coming soon.
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Reviews & ratings
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Side effects
ValtrexFamvir
  • Common cold 18%
  • Nausea 12%
  • Rash 7%
  • Fatigue 3%
  • Vomiting 3%
  • Abnormal alt 1%
More Valtrex side effects »

We haven’t found good data for Famvir side effects.

FDA side effect reports for Famvir »
How it works
ValtrexFamvir
Valtrex (Valacyclovir) is an antiviral medication that stops viruses from growing. It shortens the amount of time infections like shingles, chickenpox, and herpes will last.Coming soon.
Type of medication
ValtrexFamvir
AntiviralPrescription only
Coming soon.
Available as
ValtrexFamvir
  • Pill
  • Pill
Used for (click to learn more)
ValtrexFamvir
  • Herpes zoster
Risk factors for serious side effects
ValtrexFamvir
    • Weakened immune system
    • Elderly
    Detailed Valtrex (Valacyclovir) risks & warnings »
    Coming soon.
    Pregnancy category
    ValtrexFamvir
    BFDA pregnancy category (Probably safe)

    Research studies with animals haven’t found a risk to unborn babies, but it hasn’t been properly studied in humans.

    See the FDA package insert
    BFDA pregnancy category (Probably safe)

    Research studies with animals haven’t found a risk to unborn babies, but it hasn’t been properly studied in humans.

    See the FDA package insert
    Alcohol
    No specific alcohol-related info.No specific alcohol-related info.
    Food
    No specific food-related info.No specific food-related info.
    Kidneys and liver
    • There have been reports of people on Valtrex (Valacyclovir) who have had serious kidney damage. This is very rare. You'll want to drink plenty of fluids while you're on Valtrex (Valacyclovir).
    No specific kidneys and liver-related info.
    Sex
    • If you're taking Valtrex (Valacyclovir) for herpes, you should use barrier methods (condoms) when you're having sex since you can still pass it on to other people, even if you're taking the medication and you're not in a breakout.
    • If you're taking this for herpes, use condoms and avoid sex if you're having an outbreak so you don't infect others.
    No specific sex-related info.
    Sleep
    No specific sleep-related info.No specific sleep-related info.
    Weight
    No specific weight-related info.No specific weight-related info.
    Upsides and benefits
    ValtrexFamvir
    • Used as a first-choice treatment for herpes, chickenpox, and shingles infections and breakouts.
    • Most people (including pregnant women) usually take the oral medication without experiencing any side effects.
    • Available as a generic, so it's relatively cheap.
    • Most people generally don't develop a resistance to Valtrex (Valacyclovir).
    • Works well for most people to shorten the duration of outbreaks.
    • You don't have to take this as often as other antiviral medications.
    Coming soon.
    Downsides and risks
    ValtrexFamvir
    • Valtrex (Valacyclovir) is not a cure for herpes, chickenpox, or shingles. It will only shorten the time you have a breakout.
    • If you're taking Valtrex (Valacyclovir) for herpes, you should use barrier methods (condoms) when you're having sex since you can still pass it on to other people, even if you're taking the medication and you're not in a breakout.
    Coming soon.
    Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
    ValtrexFamvir
    • Works the best when taken as early as possible during an outbreak.
    • Drink plenty of fluids and stay hydrated while on Valtrex (Valacyclovir).
    • If you're taking this for herpes, use condoms and avoid sex if you're having an outbreak so you don't infect others.
    • Start taking Valtrex (Valacyclovir) as soon as you know you're going to have a breakout.
    • Can cause diarrhea, nausea, or weakness.
    • This isn't a cure for viral infections, but it'll help control infection breakouts.
    Coming soon.
    Learn more
    More about ValtrexSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    More about FamvirSide effectsReviews & ratingsFDA package insert