Ganciclovir capsules are used to treat cytomegalovirus (CMV) retinitis (eye infection that can cause blindness) in people whose immune system is not working normally. Ganciclovir capsules are used to treat CMV retinitis after the condition has been controlled by intravenous (injected into a vein) ganciclovir. Ganciclovir is also used to prevent cytomegalovirus (CMV) disease in people who have acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) or who have received an organ transplant and are at risk of CMV disease.Ganciclovir is in a class of medications called antivirals. It works by preventing the spread of CMV disease or slowing the growth of CMV.How should this medicine be used?
Ganciclovir comes as a capsule to take by mouth. It is usually taken with food three to six times a day.To help you remember to take ganciclovir, take it at around the same times every day. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take ganciclovir exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
Swallow the capsules whole; do not open, split, chew, or crush them.
Be careful when handling ganciclovir capsules. Do not allow your skin, eyes, mouth, or nose to come into contact with broken or crushed ganciclovir capsules. If such contact occurs, wash your skin well with soap and water or rinse your eyes well with plain water.
You generally will receive intravenous (into a vein) ganciclovir for several weeks before you begin to take ganciclovir capsules. If your condition gets worse during your treatment, you may be given a second course of intravenous ganciclovir. Your doctor may decrease your dose of ganciclovir capsules if you experience side effects.
Ganciclovir controls CMV but does not cure it.It may take some time before you feel the full benefit of ganciclovir. Continue to take ganciclovir even if you feel well. Do not stop taking ganciclovir without talking to your doctor. Stopping to take ganciclovir too soon may cause the amount of CMV in your blood to increase or the virus to become resistant to this medication.