How Do I Get Rid Of A Cold Sore?

Misfit Toy

Senior Member
Messages
4,107
Likes
9,879
Location
USA
I have had a cold sore for over a week on my lip. It hurts, it's disgusting, etc. I am on valtrex and it's done nothing. I mean, it's helped, but not enough. My lip is still bleeding, etc. Does anyone have any thoughts? I know it's much bigger than a cold sore. It's a virus. I am also exhausted.
 

Marylib

Senior Member
Messages
470
Likes
88
Location
New Zealand
I have gotten a little relief from ice now and then. Too bad the valtrex is not helping it much. My sister in law gets huge cold sores, so maybe it is "just" a cold sore gone wild? Hope you can find relief.
 

Hip

Senior Member
Messages
12,830
Likes
23,610
Topical peppermint oil exhibits high levels of virucidal activity against HSV-1 and HSV-2. Ref: 1 The study says:
Considering the lipophilic nature of the oil which enables it to penetrate the skin, peppermint oil might be suitable for topical therapeutic use as virucidal agent in recurrent herpes infection.

Topical zinc is useful HSV killer. Ref: 1 You can get zinc powder from a crushed zinc supplement tablet. The study says:
Topical ZnSO4 has been found to be an effective therapeutic modality not only for treatment but also for prolonging remissions in herpes genitalis. Topical 4% ZnSO4 has been found to be most efficacious out of the three concentrations, without any side effects.

Topical resveratrol is effective against HSV. Ref: 1 The study says:
Acyclovir was as effective as resveratrol.
...
These studies demonstrate that topically applied resveratrol inhibits HSV lesion formation in the skin of mice.

Topical DMSO is also good HSV killer. Ref: 1
 
Last edited:

Mary

Moderator
Messages
7,778
Likes
16,031
Location
Southern California
lysine may help as well. Also, I know you've been under a lot of stress, and stress really does a number on my immune system. So you might try taking andrographis - it's an immune modulator which has helped me a lot with various bugs. And try as much as possible to minimize stress - maybe meditation? It's really helpful to me for calming my mind.
 

toyfoof

Moderator
Messages
992
Likes
4,448
Location
Sedona, AZ
Lysine is my gold-star cold sore remedy. Years ago I started taking 500mg/day to prevent, and if I felt one coming on (which happened very rarely with the preventive 500mg, but like @Mary says, stress can really cause trouble), I'd go up to 3,000mg/day.

I'm now on daily 5,000mg/day for the EBV and other viral nonsense, and my doctor says it's very safe.

I hope you can find relief, I know how horrid cold sores are, and they always feel so huge even when you look in the mirror and realize they are not the size of a baseball.
 

5150

Senior Member
Messages
360
Likes
279
I have had a cold sore for over a week on my lip. It hurts, it's disgusting, etc. I am on valtrex and it's done nothing. I mean, it's helped, but not enough. My lip is still bleeding, etc. Does anyone have any thoughts? I know it's much bigger than a cold sore. It's a virus. I am also exhausted.
hi , saw your situation and hoped to share what works with me.
Prevention, most important. Things that stress you emotionally & physically, will lower the immune strength so low as to let the virus show itself. Too long in hot sun,too many close calls with a junk food / all the sugars and processed foods will provide a comfortable growing environment ; so you may be worn down a bit? This is when that virus comes out of hiding. // Ideally , the zone will get treated as soon as you first feel it. Acyclovir, valtrex, valacyclovir are all good before the sore gets out of control. So hours make a difference... the sooner the med gets working . the less severe will be the outbreak. The meds mentioned above are prescriptions. Abreva, mentioned later, used to be script but now is otc.

If it breaks out and starts fully expressing itself, choices are made to ameliorate the damage. A product called Abreva is the last treatment I use. It's a cream, in a small tube. Again, these meds should always get used , asap. Abreva is a good helper for after the sore has shown itself. (think, 3 days vs. 12 days?) Drink water, a lot of it!

"You are exhausted". And so the virus sees the opening, and gets you. But when you first feel the exhaustion, your outbreak can be controlled even then. Use the acyclovir next, or even simutaneously ; except the Rx drugs will be working by then. so I wait until the outbreak is exiting, and give it a final push out the door! Abreva. Note- i don't take abreva every time... just when the Rx treatment is late getting used.
here. I do hope this is helpful for you. Get some rest : ) No to exhaustion. that's the initiator.

Best to you. Sorry this stuff is so nasty for all of us.

5150
 

Hip

Senior Member
Messages
12,830
Likes
23,610
Are we aware of any viruses besides HSV1/HSV2 causing cold sores? Can EBV or CMV, for example, cause cold sores? @Hip
A quick Google search on herpes labialis differential diagnosis finds several other conditions that may look like cold sores:
The differential diagnosis for herpes labialis should include folliculitis, aphthous stomatitis, oral candidiasis, medication-induced stomatitis, pharyngitis, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, and hand, foot, and mouth disease (coxsackievirus infection).
 
Messages
11
Likes
54
I have used a few different (well lots :confused:) remedies and I will tell you that I have had some of the best results with simple old ice. Another poster mentioned ice and I thought I would second it. Wrapping an ice cube in a paper towel and holding it up to your lip *upon first noticing of the bump or of the redness*.

For future: Another good remedy that I've had success with is a little German device called a Herpotherm. Look on ebay. They're not super cheap but they work. It's worked for me anyway. I had a friend from England send me one 3 years ago. Still works! I bought a second one too. Just make sure you always have spare batteries as they can be fiddly. You might have to zap it a bunch of times. Hope that helps!
 

PatJ

Forum Support Assistant
Messages
3,778
Likes
11,277
Location
Canada
Consider avoiding foods that are high in argnine (chocolate, nuts, seeds, soy.) "Arginine exacerbates the replication and growth of a once dormant virus." (from this site.)

from: http://www.earthclinic.com/cures/natural-cold-sore-remedies.html
(This site has list of many remedies with reviews. Pure acetone was number one by far.)

Acetone (pure, not nail polish remover which often has other ingredients)
Very popular and apparently effective remedy. Apply to cotton swab, press into cold sore for five minutes (it will burn), wait 30 minutes, repeat. Should go to the scab stage within a day or two.

Hydrogen Peroxide
Apply to cotton swab, press into cold sore for five minutes (it will burn), wait 30 minutes, repeat.

Topical DMSO is also good HSV killer
From Mary Jo Fahey's Iodine book:
In his iodine article on his Tahoma Clinic Web site, Dr. Wright relays a story about iodine’s ability to inactivate the herpes virus:
"Herpes simplex (herpes) outbreaks can be stopped cold, but it often takes longer for the sore to heal itself over."

He explains that using SSKI (potassium iodide) mixed 50-50 with Dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) works better, as the DMSO enables SSKI to penetrate much more deeply into the tissues and kill germs.
 
Last edited:

used_to_race

Senior Member
Messages
164
Likes
251
Location
Southern California
A quick Google search on herpes labialis differential diagnosis finds several other conditions that may look like cold sores:
It's weird, I've had some sort of an ulcer on my mouth (actually, a mm or two away from the edge of my mouth) for like 3 weeks now. It started to come in just as my symptoms were flaring up, and I've been feeling worse than average for the whole time I've had it. I caught a cold in the last week, but now it's all finally returning to normal. I remembered that for the first 3 weeks after I initially got ill, I had a similar ulcer on my mouth, and I get them every now and then. But I don't have HSV1 or 2, and I don't have CMV. The only ones I've got are EBV and probably HHV6. I also definitely don't have hand foot and mouth disease. None of the differential diagnoses you listed seem to remotely fit. My rheumatologist looked at it and wasn't too sure either. I think it might just be a non-infectious thing related to inflammation. Or it's possibly related to EBV, since that was what first triggered all these problems for me anyway.
 

Hip

Senior Member
Messages
12,830
Likes
23,610
I've had some sort of an ulcer on my mouth (actually, a mm or two away from the edge of my mouth) for like 3 weeks now.
If it is an oral ulcer that looks like a herpangina mouth ulcer, that can be due to the enteroviruses linked to ME/CFS (namely coxsackievirus B and echovirus).

Dr Chia is an expert at noticing the subtle signs of a chronic enterovirus infection, and he says that the occasional recurrent appearance of oral ulcers is one symptom of chronic enterovirus. His various presentations at the London Invest in ME conferences detail a lot of the acute and chronic symptoms of enterovirus infection.

To be tested for chronic enterovirus, Chia says only the antibody blood test at ARUP Lab, which uses the highly sensitive neutralization method, is reliable for detecting this virus in ME/CFS patients.
 

Hip

Senior Member
Messages
12,830
Likes
23,610
I've had all these tests and they were negative.
Occasionally Chia sees ME/CFS patients who are negative on the ARUP Lab enterovirus tests, but positive on his stomach biopsy test for enterovirus. This is likely due to the patient having an enterovirus not covered by the ARUP Lab tests (for example, there are 32 echoviruses, but ARUP only test for the 5 most common ones).

By the way, Dr Chia has changed his threshold for active infection on the ARUP tests. It used to be 1:320, but now he states the threshold is 1:160 to 1:320.
 
Last edited: