Xerese Cream (Acyclovir/Hydrocortisone)

(℞) Prescription Required

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Xerese 5%/1%

Product of Canada
Manufactured by: Bausch Health Canada
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Xerese 5%/1%
Product of Canada
Manufactured by Bausch Health Canada
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Xerese Cream (Acyclovir/Hydrocortisone) Usage and Side Effects

XERESE (acyclovir and hydrocortisone) is a prescription medicine used in people ages 12 and older to lessen the chance of a cold sore becoming worse (ulcerating).

Warnings and Precautions

XERESE is for cold sores on lips and around the mouth only. XERESE should not be used in eyes, mouth, nose, genitals, AROUND THE ANUS OR ON ANY MUCOUS MEMBRANE.

This product should not be used if you are severely immunocompromised (e.g. have HIV, cancer or are a transplant patient).

BEFORE you use XERESE talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you:

  • Have a weak immune system (become sick very easily). It is not known if XERESE will harm you.
  • Have any other medical conditions.
  • Are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if XERESE will harm your unborn baby.
  • Are breast-feeding or plan to breast-feed. It is not known if XERESE is passed in your milk to your baby.

Side Effects

Like all medicines, XERESE can cause side effects, although not everybody gets them.

The most common side effects of XERESE are: drying or flaking of the skin, tingling or burning, redness of the skin, changes in your skin color where the cream is applied (pigmentation changes), swelling, bitter taste after you apply XERESE. If these effects become bothersome, contact your doctor.

Tell your doctor if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away. These are not all the possible side effects of XERESE. For more information, ask your doctor or pharmacist.

Interactions with this medication

 Inform your doctor or pharmacist about all of your medicines, including over-the-counter drugs that may interact with XERESE.

No drug interaction studies were done for XERESE.

Proper Use of this medication

Use XERESE exactly as directed by your doctor.

Use XERESE early, at the first sign of a cold sore (e.g. itching, burning, tingling or redness).

In case of accidental contact with the eyes or the inside of the nose or mouth, rinse thoroughly with water.

To avoid spreading the infection, do not share this medicine.

Wash your hands before and after using XERESE.

Clean and dry the skin before applying XERESE. Spread a thin layer of XERESE on the affected area.

Do not rub the cold sore because it may spread to other areas around your mouth, or make your cold sore worse.

Do not cover the cold sore or area around the cold sore with a bandage.

Do not use other skin products (such as make-up, sun screen or lip balm) or other skin medicine on the cold sore or area around the cold sore.

Do not bathe, shower or swim until 30 minutes after applying XERESE.

Talk to your doctor if your cold sore is not better in 2 weeks.

Usual adult dose:

Apply XERESE topically 5 times per day for 5 days. You should topically apply a quantity of XERESE sufficient to cover the affected area, including the outer margin. Avoid unnecessary rubbing of the affected area to avoid aggravating or transferring the infection. Wash your hands before and after the use of the cream to avoid spreading the infection.

For adolescents 12 years of age and older, the dosage is the same as in adults.


In case of drug overdose, contact a health care practitioner, hospital emergency department or regional Poison Control Centre immediately, even if there are no symptoms.

Missed dose:

If you miss a dose of XERESE, apply it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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