The goal of treatment of recurrent Herpes Labialis is to stop the virus from replicating, and to minimize the impact of inflammatory response and minimize Herpes Labialis
development and progression.
You need to see your doctor (or pharmacists in some provinces, such as Alberta, Quebec, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Saskatchewan) to access them.
Prescribed topical treatments are usually covered by private insurance.
Xerese® (acyclovir and hydrocortisone)
The first and currently the only available product that combines an antiviral (acyclovir) with an anti-inflammatory (hydrocortisone). Xerese® stops the virus from replicating, which stops the infection and hydrocortisone reduces the inflammation, which helps the healing.
Xerese® (acyclovir and hydrocortisone) Cream 5%/1% for topical use is indicated for the early treatment of recurrent labialis herpes
to reduce the likelihood of ulcerative cold sores and shorten the lesion time in adults and adolescents 12 years of age and older.
Zovirax (acyclovir 5%) is a topical ointment that is indicated to treat cold sores in immunocompromised patients. Its anti-viral effect prevents the virus from replicating and spreading to nearby cells which helps reduce the severity of the outbreak.
Most over-the-counter therapies fail to target underlying pathogenic mechanisms (i.e., viral and inflammatory) and, thus, have little to no efficacy.
Topical analgesics/anaesthetics including benzocaine, lidocaine, benzyl alcohol, camphor, menthol and phenol help provide temporary pain relief and may help reduce the itching associated with minor skin irritations.
Viral Entry Blocking Agent Docosanol (Abreva™, topical cream)
This is non-prescription medication available at your local drug store. Abreva shortens healing time and the duration of cold sore symptoms including pain, burning, tingling and itching. Abreva is used at the first sign or symptom of a cold sore (prodromal stage) for best results.
Lipactin (zinc, heparin)
Other non-prescription products containing zinc and heparin (Lipactin, topical gel) are also available. This product is indicated for the symptomatic treatment of cold sores.