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Famvir is a tablet treatment for genital herpes. It contains an antiviral ingredient called famciclovir, and is marketed by Novartis.

You can get your repeat prescription and buy Famvir online quickly and efficiently with our confidential service. Treatments are shipped by tracked parcel from our UK pharmacy.

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This tablet contains 125mg of the active ingredient famciclovir. Take as directed.

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Famvir is a tablet treatment for genital herpes. It contains an antiviral ingredient called famciclovir, and is marketed by Novartis.

You can get your repeat prescription and buy Famvir online quickly and efficiently with our confidential service. Treatments are shipped by tracked parcel from our UK pharmacy.

This content was reviewed by a clinician on

03 December 2021
dr daniel

Dr Daniel Atkinson

(GP Clinical Lead - GMC No. 4624794) 03 December 2021
Product information

Famvir is a brand of medicine indicated for the treatment of herpes simplex virus type 2, or genital herpes. It is an antiviral drug, belonging to the guanosine analogue family of medicine, and is manufactured by Swiss pharmaceutical company Novartis. The medicine has also been used to medicate cases of shingles (herpes zoster) and recurrent outbreaks of herpes simplex in individuals with compromised immune systems. When applied during the early stages of reactivation, the medication can be very effective at curbing the expansion of symptoms.

  1. Treatment for genital herpes

  2. Limits spread of symptoms

  3. Only needs to be taken twice a day

Herpes simplex virus type 2 is most commonly transmitted through sexual contact. It manifests in the form of genital sores and blistering, but may not present these symptoms immediately. In many cases, the illness can remain inactive in a person’s body for months, or even years following infection. After the initial outbreak of symptoms has passed, the illness may appear to go away. However, the virus will remain present, with reactivations tending to occur when the immune system of the individual is weakened, due to factors such as tiredness, illness or stress.

The virus is at its most infectious when it is active, particularly after the surfaces of sores and blisters have broken. After this, it remains highly contagious until symptoms have completely healed. During this time it is advisable to avoid sexual contact with others.

Famvir works by stopping cells infected with the virus from spreading. It does this by inhibiting the virus’s capacity to reproduce itself. When the virus is prevented from achieving further growth, this leaves it susceptible to attack from the immune system, which then forces the virus into a remissive state.

If you haven’t used treatment for herpes before or are having your first episode, you should see your doctor in person, or arrange to see someone at a GUM clinic. Before you are issued treatment, a practitioner will likely need to examine your symptoms and provide guidance on treatment.

Patients looking to renew their prescription can buy Famvir online from our UK pharmacy. Simply take our questionnaire to start your consultation. Once our doctor has reviewed your case, they will issue a prescription if your treatment is suitable, which will then be dispensed at our pharmacy. We’ll ship your medication by next-day courier, so you can expect to receive it in one working day.

Active Ingredient

The antiviral agent in Famvir is a substance called famciclovir. In medicine, the compound is referred to as a prodrug. This type of treatment is different to standard drugs, in that it is transformed into an active agent via the body’s metabolic processes.

In the case of famciclovir, the body converts the agent into penciclovir, which works in a similar fashion to other antivirals, by stopping the virus from reproducing. It does this by interfering with the activity of an enzyme which the virus uses to feed itself and multiply. Once this growth has become neutralised, the body’s antibodies are better able to fight the virus back into remission.

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Page last reviewed:  03/12/2021


Always ensure you follow the advice of your doctor when using this medicine. This will help to optimise its efficiency and reduce the potentiality for side effects.

  1. Begin taking Famvir as soon as you notice the development of symptoms.
  2. For recurrent outbreaks, the usual dose is one tablet twice daily for 5 days.
  3. Swallow one tablet at a time with water.
  4. This medication does not need to be taken with food.
  5. Under no circumstances exceed the dose prescribed by your doctor.
  6. If you miss a dose, do not attempt to compensate with a double dose. Simply continue to take your medication as normal.
  7. Seek immediate medical advice if you take more than you should.

Prior to first use, read the patient information leaflet carefully, and if you are still unsure, ask your doctor or pharmacist for help.

Page last reviewed:  03/12/2021
Please read the patient information leaflet for this medicine fully before use:

Famvir 125mg

Side effects & Warnings

Side effects

It is important before using any medicine to be aware of possible side effects, so that you can seek help as appropriate in the event that they occur.

Common (1 in 10 people or more):


Uncommon (1 in 100 people or more):

Nausea, vomiting, abnormal liver function test results, dizziness, rash, itching.

Rare (1 in 1000 people):

Confusion, drowsiness, rash, hallucinations.

The information provided here is not comprehensive. For a full list of side effects, consult the patient information leaflet supplied. If you experience anything unusual or think you may be having an allergic reaction to the treatment, consult a doctor right away.


Taking it with other medicines

During consultation, make sure you tell your doctor about any other medications you are currently using, or have recently used, whether they are prescription, non-prescription or remedial treatments.

Raloxifen, probenecid, or any other medicines which may affect kidney function can inhibit your suitability to Famvir. Additionally, you should never take more than one treatment at a time for herpes unless explicitly told to by your doctor.

Conditions to look out for

Make sure you let your prescriber know if you have ever had liver or kidney problems, or any illnesses which affect the immune system.

Pregnancy and breastfeeding

Famvir should not be used by women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. If these circumstances apply to you or you are thinking about having a baby, speak to your doctor before you use this medicine.

Driving and machinery

This treatment can cause those who use it to feel drowsy, dizzy or confused. If this happens to you, you should refrain from driving or using machines.

Lactose intolerance

Famvir tablets contain lactose. If you have been made aware of an intolerance to some sugars, you should speak to your doctor before taking this medication.

Page last reviewed:  03/12/2021
Please read the patient information leaflet for this medicine fully before use:

Famvir 125mg


Can I still drink alcohol?

You can. Alcohol is not known to interact with Famvir. However, we would recommend that you only drink in sensible amounts, so that you can continue to take the medicine responsibly and as prescribed by your doctor.

Will I still be able to drive?

If you experience any side effects which could affect your motor functions or judgment, such as dizziness, then it is recommended that you do not drive.

Can I take the medicine while pregnant?

This medication may cause harm to you or your baby if applied during pregnancy or breastfeeding. Only use it in this case if a doctor deems it absolutely necessary.

How should I store it?

Always keep your medicines below 30°C. Store them sealed in the original packaging to prevent them from being susceptible to light and moisture.

Am I allergic to anything in the medicine?

Famvir contains famciclovir: hydroxypropylcellulose, lactose (125 mg and 250 mg tablets only), sodium starch glycollate and magnesium stearate, hydroxypropylmethylcellulose, titanium dioxide (E171) and polyethylene glycol.

Is it available over-the-counter?

As you will require consultation with a doctor prior to using Famvir, you cannot buy the medicine without a prescription. 

Having sex while taking herpes treatment

Herpes is at its most contagious when symptoms are present, so it’s better to not have sex when you have symptoms. Condoms do not always cover exposed sores. If you wait until five days after your sores have healed before having sex, the risk of transmission will be significantly lower.

Is it right for me?

If you are prone to herpes outbreaks and recurrent symptoms, it is always better to act quickly so that you can halt the condition from getting worse. The first time you get herpes symptoms, you should see a doctor in person, so that they can help you get the right medication.

Repeat prescriptions are easy with our online service. Take our questionnaire to have your request reviewed by our doctor. After they have approved your prescription, this will be sent to our UK pharmacy to be fulfilled, and delivered to you by next-day parcel. Every order is shipped in discreet, unmarked packaging to ensure your privacy.

Page last reviewed:  03/12/2021 is rated 4.9 out of 5 by 3256 customers on TrustPilot!
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