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Q. I got a shingles vaccine, and the doctor advised me to take Acyclovir. Is this a standard practice?

Answered by
Dr. Sadaf Mustafa
and medically reviewed by Dr. Preetha J
This is a premium question & answer published on Oct 13, 2020

Hi doctor,

Just to be safe, I got shingles vaccine from a local clinic, as my healthcare provider was out. I had to get two shots. They advised me to get a prescription for Acyclovir, a herpes suppression medication, after getting the shot. I did so. Now I am genuinely confused about why they had me do this. Was it not the purpose of the vaccine to prevent getting shingles? Is this a standard practice for after a shingles vaccination? I currently take Bupropion.



Welcome to

Conveniently Acyclovir after shingles vaccine is not used in the average-risk population. Do you have a compromising immune condition? Like HIV (human immunodeficiency viruses), cancer, or other inborn diseases?

Thank you.

Hello doctor,

Thank you for your reply.

My husband does have herpes, but he takes a daily suppression medication. I told them that it seemed like overkill to ask me to take the Acyclovir for five days. I was highly suspicious, so that is why I submitted this query.



Welcome back to

Acyclovir can be used for a flare of herpes or shingles and as a prevention for these conditions. I understand that you do not have any immune-suppressing condition. You can always keep it and use it if you feel like you are about to have herpes or shingles after appropriate consultation with your physician.

Take care.

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