Antivirals are well-tolerated by most people. However, not everyone can or should take antivirals. Oral medication is quite safe and generally has few side effects, but possible side effects include headaches, dizziness, depression, nausea, fatigue, vomiting, stomach pain, and joint pain. The benefits and risks must be discussed with a doctor.
Topical treatments can have some side effects including dry lips, dryness of skin, cracked lips, burning skin, shedding skin, itching, flakiness, and stinging on the skin.
Oral medications may not be the best choice for certain people. People with kidney damage or kidney failure may need a lower dosage. Be sure to tell your doctor if you have kidney problems before you start taking the drug.