Ganciclovir gel

Pronunciation

Generic Name: ganciclovir (gan-SYE-kloe-vir)
Brand Name: Zirgan

Ganciclovir gel is used for:

Treating acute herpetic keratitis (dendritic ulcers).

Ganciclovir gel is an antiviral. It works by stopping the herpes simplex virus from replicating.

Do NOT use ganciclovir gel if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in ganciclovir gel

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

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Before using ganciclovir gel:

Some medical conditions may interact with ganciclovir gel. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with ganciclovir gel. However, no specific interactions with ganciclovir gel are known at this time.

Ask your health care provider if ganciclovir gel may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use ganciclovir gel:

Use ganciclovir gel as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Ganciclovir gel is only for the eye. Do not get it in your nose or mouth. If you get it in these areas, rinse right away with cool water.
  • Do not wear contact lenses while you are using ganciclovir gel. Take care of your contact lenses as directed by the manufacturer. Check with your doctor before you use them.
  • To use ganciclovir gel in the eye, first, wash your hands. Tilt your head back. Using your index finger, pull the lower eyelid away from the eye to form a pouch. Drop the medicine into the pouch and gently close your eyes. Immediately use your finger to apply pressure to the inside corner of the eyelid for 1 to 2 minutes. Do not blink. Remove excess medicine around your eye with a clean, dry tissue, being careful not to touch your eye. Wash your hands to remove any medicine that may be on them.
  • To prevent germs from contaminating your medicine, do not touch the applicator tip to any surface, including the eye. Keep the container tightly closed.
  • To clear up your infection completely, use ganciclovir gel for the full course of treatment. Keep using it even if you feel better in a few days.
  • If you miss a dose of ganciclovir gel, use it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not use 2 doses at once.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use ganciclovir gel.

Important safety information:

  • Ganciclovir gel may cause blurred vision. Use ganciclovir gel with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks if you cannot see clearly.
  • Ganciclovir gel may cause harm if it is swallowed. If you may have taken it by mouth, contact your poison control center or emergency room right away.
  • Ganciclovir gel should be used with extreme caution in CHILDREN younger than 2 years old; safety and effectiveness in these children have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using ganciclovir gel while you are pregnant. It is not known if ganciclovir gel is found in breast milk after topical use. If you are or will be breast-feeding while you use ganciclovir gel, check with your doctor. Discuss any possible risks to your baby.

Possible side effects of ganciclovir gel:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Blurred vision; mild eye irritation.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); new or worsening eye pain, redness, itching, or swelling; severe or persistent eye irritation.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may also report side effects at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch .

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately.

Proper storage of ganciclovir gel:

Store ganciclovir gel at room temperature, between 59 and 77 degrees F (15 and 25 degrees C). Do not freeze. Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep ganciclovir gel out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about ganciclovir gel, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Ganciclovir gel is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take ganciclovir gel or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about ganciclovir gel. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to ganciclovir gel. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using ganciclovir gel.

Issue Date: April 2, 2014
Database Edition 14.2.1.001
Copyright © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

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