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Penciclovir topical Side Effects

It is possible that some side effects of penciclovir topical may not have been reported. These can be reported to the FDA here. Always consult a healthcare professional for medical advice.

For the Consumer

Applies to penciclovir topical: topical cream

As well as its needed effects, penciclovir topical may cause unwanted side effects that require medical attention.

If any of the following side effects occur while taking penciclovir topical, check with your doctor or nurse as soon as possible:

  • Mild pain, burning, or stinging

Some penciclovir topical side effects may not need any medical attention. As your body gets used to the medicine these side effects may disappear. Your health care professional may be able to help you prevent or reduce these side effects, but do check with them if any of the following side effects continue, or if you are concerned about them:

More common
  • Headache
Less common
  • Change in sense of taste
  • decreased sensitivity of skin, particularly to touch
  • redness of the skin
  • skin rash

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to penciclovir topical: topical cream


In clinical trials, 1 or more local side effects were reported by 3% of patients using penciclovir topical and 4% of patients using placebo.[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Application site reaction (1%)
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Hypesthesia/local anesthesia (less than 1%), erythematous rash (less than 1%)
Frequency not reported: Mild erythema
Postmarketing reports: Local edema, pain, paresthesia, pruritus, skin discoloration, urticaria, aggravated condition, decreased therapeutic response[Ref]


Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Taste perversion (less than 1%)
Postmarketing reports: Oral/pharyngeal edema, parosmia[Ref]

Nervous system

Postmarketing reports: Headache[Ref]


1. "Product Information. Denavir (penciclovir topical)." SmithKline Beecham, Philadelphia, PA.

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