Family, Internal Medicine, General Medical Questions/Cold sores


Hi Dr. C.,

My son accidentally used my toothbrush and I just had a cold sore come out.  He has a paediatric disorder (not relevant to you), which leaves me worried and desperately trying to minimize an outbreak.  I have given him 2g twice a day of Valtrex form1 day, which is often given at first sign of a cold sore in an effort to minimize lesions.  My question is this.....did I do this in vain since there is no sign of a cold sore yet?  Would it be beneficial to continue giving him Valtrex for a week (during incubation phase), maybe at a lower dose and then give him the higher dose again if he starts getting a cold sore?  Or would the best option have been to just wait until signs of a cold sore were present?  What would the best regime be to minimize outbreak for my son?

I can't find a dermatologist on this site.

Thank you,
Worried mama.

Dear Diane,

Some people are more prone to cold sores than others. Unfortunately, this is beyond your control. He has a 50-50 chance of susceptibility to the herpes simplex virus. I would try not to worry about it and let nature take its course. There is a good possibility he may not ever develop cold sores.  

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Dr. Pamela M. Cipriano, DNP, APRN


My name is Dr. Cipriano. I have a private practice specializing in adult health and wellness. I can answer questions associated with thyroid disease, cardiac disease, pulmonary disease, high blood pressure, muscular aches and pains, cholesterol levels, male/female sexual questions or questions on the sexual organs, gastrointestinal problems, healthy ways to lose weight and maintain a healthy lifestyle, and nearly anything else that pertains to medicine.


I am on the Medical Staff at a local hospital where I work as a medical/surgical hospitalist as well as in the emergency department. I am certified in critical care and advanced cardiac life support. Prior to becoming a Nurse Practitioner, I was a certified critical care nurse (CCRN).

Society of Hospital Medicine American Association of Critical Care Nurses American Association of Nurse Practitioners Connecticut Advance Nurse Practitioner Society

Maryville University 2014-2016 Doctor of Nursing Practice University of Connecticut 2007-2011 MSN, Acute Care Track Nurse Practitioner. Board Certified September 2011 Critical Care Certified 2014 Central Connecticut State University 2002-2006 BA Psychology St. Mary's Hospital School of Nursing 1991-1993 Diploma Nursing Registered Nurse

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Named as a World Wide Leader in Healthcare and was included in the 2013-2014 edition by the International Nurses Association.

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