Skip to Main Content

INTRODUCTION

penciclovir (pen-sye-kloe-veer)

Denavir

Classification

Therapeutic: antivirals (topical)

Pharmacologic: nucleoside analogues

Indications

Recurrent herpes labialis (cold sores).

Action

Inhibits viral DNA synthesis and replication. Therapeutic Effects: Death of herpes virus. Decreases lesion duration and pain. Active against herpes viruses.

Adverse Reactions/Side Effects

CNS: headache. Local: application site reactions.

PHYSICAL THERAPY IMPLICATIONS

Examination and Evaluation

  • Assess skin and mucosal lesions to help document whether drug therapy is successful in controlling infection. Report any local irritation or inflammation at the application site.

Interventions

  • Avoid contact with cutaneous or mucosal lesions when treating patient.

  • Always wash hands thoroughly and disinfect equipment (whirlpools, electrotherapeutic devices, treatment tables, and so forth) to help prevent the spread of infection. Employ universal precautions as indicated for specific patients.

Patient/Client-Related Instruction

  • Advise patient to apply medication as directed. Penciclovir should not be used more frequently or longer than prescribed.

  • Remind patient that penciclovir does not cure herpes infections. The virus lies dormant in nerve cells, and this drug will not prevent the spread of infection to others.

  • Instruct patient and family/caregivers to report other troublesome side effects, including severe or prolonged headache.

Pharmacokinetics

Absorption: Not absorbed following topical use.

Distribution: Unknown.

Metabolism and Excretion: Converted intracellularly to active triphosphate form; excreted in urine.

Half-life: 2–2.5 hr.

Favorite Table | Download (.pdf) | Print

TIME/ACTION PROFILE

ROUTE ONSET PEAK DURATION
topical unknown unknown unknown

Contraindications/Precautions

Contraindicated in: Hypersensitivity to penciclovir or other components of the formulation.

Use Cautiously in: Pregnancy, lactation, or children (safety not established).

Interactions

Drug-Drug: None significant.

Route/Dosage

PO (Adults): Apply 1% cream q 2 hr for 4 days while awake.

Availability

Cream: 1% in 2-g tubes.

Pop-up div Successfully Displayed

This div only appears when the trigger link is hovered over. Otherwise it is hidden from view.