What are empiric treatments for HSV meningoencephalitis and VZV encephalitis?

Updated: Aug 07, 2018
  • Author: David S Howes, MD; Chief Editor: Barry E Brenner, MD, PhD, FACEP  more...
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Empiric adult emergency treatment for herpes simplex virus (HSV) meningoencephalitis and varicella-zoster virus (VZV) encephalitis consists of acyclovir 10 mg/kg (infused over 1 h) q8h for 14-21 days. Give acyclovir 10-15 mg/kg IV q8h for neonatal HSV; for HSV encephalitis in the pediatric population, give acyclovir 10 mg/kg IV q8h.

In HIV-positive patients, consider foscarnet, given the increased incidence of acyclovir-resistant HSV and herpes zoster virus (HZV).

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