Drug therapy also called chemotherapy is a widely accepted method of curing, treating and preventing several diseases afflicting humanity today. Thousands upon thousands of vaccines have been produced to combat the menace called disease. Many have died as a result of one illness or the other and several are still lying on hospital beds hoping to be set free from the grip and terror of various diseases. With the advent of drug therapy treatment, many lives have been redeemed from death that may have been caused by disease infection. The medical industry has recorded tremendous success in the administration of the drug therapy treatment to save lives, improve the health condition of infected individuals, eradicate major pandemic diseases and prevent the spread of contactable diseases. The virus is small organisms that rely on other organism cells for survival and replication inflicting damaging effect on the host. Among several virus presents in the world, today are HIV, AIDS, hepatitis B, Herpes simplex and variola infection. These parasites produce a destructive effect on any organism they associate with. Oftentimes, they have a way of breaking down the immune power of infected individuals and gradually destroys the cells that make up the body for their replication. They are self-centred organisms and cannot exist alone. Among several drugs produced to treat and mitigate viral infections is Aciclovir produced in several forms and grams.
What is Aciclovir?
Aciclovir is a type of antiviral vaccine mainly used for treating and preventing herpes simplex and varicella-zoster. Aciclovir possesses a trade name called Zovirax and it has long been approved by U.S Food and Drug Administration qualifying it has an antiviral therapy treatment for certain viral infections. Aside from the above mentioned viral infections, Aciclovir or acyclovir is used to treat chickenpox, shingles, cytomegalovirus infections. It was publicized in 1977 after fabrication and holding its place on the list of essential medicines of World Health Organisation. Several herpes infections treated and prevented by this potent antiviral vaccine are genital herpes simplex, neonatal herpes simplex, cold sore and herpes simplex encephalitis.
Structural Composition and Properties of Aciclovir
Aciclovir is also represented in chemical science with a chemical name called acycloguanosine. It is characterized by a molecular formula C8H11N5O3 with molecular weight value of 225.208g/mol. Its structural composition is bonds of chemical elements such as carbon, hydrogen, Nitrogen and oxygen. Connecting these basic elements together are chemical bonds. Aciclovir is also characterized by hydrogen bond donor and acceptor counts of ratio 3:4, monoisotopic mass value 225.086g/mol, heavy atom count 16 and covalently bonded unit count 1. Its physical properties are recorded as melting point 256.5-257oC and water solubility value of 1.620mg/L at 25oC.
Possible Side Effects of Acyclovir Usage
The known side effects experienced when acyclovir is used are nausea feeling and diarrhea. Other side effects are nose blockage, swelling of face, lips and internal weakness. It is advised to visit a physician when these adverse effects are noticed for proper medical counsel.
Dosage information of Aciclovir
Zovirax tablet is sold in 200, 400, 800mg and as a solution 200mg per 5ml. To treat and prevent shingles, a dose of 800mg every 4hours, 5 times a day for 10 days can be administered. Genital herpes is also treated with the same dosage as shingles but it is ideal, to begin with, 200mg. The same dosage can be administered for chickenpox but should be used for 5days in adults. 10-15 mg/kg 1BW IV every 8 hours for 10-21 days is recommended for Herpes simplex encephalitis. Herpes Zoster can be treated with 800mg orally every 4 hours, 5 times a day for 7 to 10days. For Neonatal HSV infection (less than 3months), 10-20mg/kg or 500mg/m2 IV every 8 hours for 10 – 21 days is recommended.
Warnings and Precautions
Care must be taken when administering acyclovir. Reduction in dosage is essential for infected individuals with renal impairment. It is crucial to follow the prescribed dosage accurately.