Taking Valacyclovir for Genital Herpes or Chickenpox
For the treatment of the first infection of genital herpes, the dose of valacyclovir is 1000 mg (1 gram), twice a day, for 10 days.
For the treatment of an outbreak of genital herpes (after the first infection), the dose of valacyclovir is 500 mg, twice a day, for three days.
Genital Herpes Suppression
When used to prevent future outbreaks of genital herpes, the dose of valacyclovir is 1000 mg (1 gram), once a day, every day. For people who have had fewer than 10 outbreaks of genital herpes in one year, the dose of valacyclovir may be decreased to 500 mg a day, taken in a single dose.
For people with HIV and genital herpes who have a CD4 cell count equal to or greater than 100 cells/mm3, the dose of valacyclovir used to prevent future outbreaks is 500 mg twice a day. Valacyclovir has not been studied in people with HIV who have a CD4 cell count of less than 100 cells/mm3.
Preventing the Spread of Genital Herpes
To decrease the chance of spreading genital herpes to sexual partners, people who have had fewer than 10 outbreaks per year can take valacyclovir 500 mg once a day. Valacyclovir has not been studied for this use in people who have 10 or more outbreaks per year. Safer sexual practices should still be used. Condoms should always be used, and sexual contact should be avoided while having an outbreak.
Your child's healthcare provider will calculate the recommended valacyclovir dose for chickenpox based on your child's weight. In general, the recommended dose for children age 2 to 18 years old is 20 mg per kg (about 9 mg per pound) three times a day for five days. The dose should not exceed 1000 mg three times daily, although this only becomes important for larger children.