Search thousands of topics on CostHelper.com

BROWSE ALL TOPICS >> appliances babies & children  cars  consumer electronics health & personal care home & garden personal finance  pets  schools small business weddings
CostHelper > Health & Personal Care  > Reproductive Health > Cold Sore Treatment

Cold Sore Treatment Cost


How Much Does Cold Sore Treatment Cost?

 
average costWith Health Insurance: $10-$85+ Prescription Copay high costWithout Health Insurance: $20-$450+
post E-mail post Post  

Cold sores are bumps or blisters on the lips, mouth or face caused by the herpes simplex virus. Formally known as herpes simplex, cold sores typically go away on their own, but treatment can ease symptoms such as pain and itching and help speed healing -- or, it can reduce the number and severity of outbreaks.

Typical costs:

  • For patients covered by health insurance, out-of-pocket costs for cold sore treatment typically consist of up to $20 for an over-the-counter medication or a prescription drug copay of $10-$85 or more, depending on the plan and whether the drug is generic, preferred or non-preferred. Cold sore treatment typically is covered by health insurance.
  • For patients not covered by health insurance, the cost of cold sore diagnosis typically includes a doctor visit and, in rare cases, a lab test fee. For example, AnyLabTestNow.com charges $49 for a herpes simplex lab test[1] . And cold sore treatment typically costs less than $20 for an over-the counter ointment that provides symptom relief only -- or, in the case of Abreva[2] , shortens healing time. For example, Drugstore.com charges about $2-$20 for over-the-counter cold sore medication[3] .
  • Treatment costs from less than $5 to a little more than $360 per bottle (or less than $5-$150 per outbreak) for the most commonly prescribed oral medications that, according to a Journal of Family Practice report[4] , are the most effective treatments available and can shorten the duration of an outbreak by about a day. For example, Walmart offers generic acyclovir[5] for $4 per bottle. Drugstore.com charges about $340 for a 30-count bottle of generic valacyclovir and about $365 for the brand-name equivalent, Valtrex. And Drugstore.com charges about $30 for a 60-count bottle of generic acyclovir, and about $360 for the brand-name equivalent Zovirax.
  • Treatment costs about $325-$450 per bottle for the less commonly prescribed oral medication, famciclovir. Drugstore.com charges about $325 for a 30-count bottle of generic famciclovir and about $450 for the brand-name equivalent Famvir.
  • Based on estimated prescription dosages[6] from eMedicinehealth.com, the per-outbreak costs would be: less than $4 to $14 for acyclovir, $33 for famciclovir, $45 for Famvir, $45 for valacyclovir, $48 for Valtrex and $150 for Zovirax.
  • Expect to pay up to $200 or more for a tube of a prescription topical medication to relieve symptoms and possibly shorten healing time by about half a day. Drugstore.com charges about $180 for a tube of prescription Denavir cream and about $210 for a tube of prescription Zovirax.
Related articles: STD Testing, Health Insurance

What should be included:
  • A doctor typically can diagnose a cold sore with a visual examination.
  • Most over-the counter cold sore creams such as Zilactin[7] and Anbesol Cold Sore Therapy, contain numbing ingredients such as lidocaine, benzocaine or tetracaine, and can only relieve symptoms. Only one over-the-counter medication, Abreva[8] , has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to shorten the duration of cold sores.
  • Prescription topical anti-viral medications, such as Zovirax[9] , or oral medications, such as Valtrex[10] , work by targeting the mechanism by which the herpes virus multiplies. These medications can relieve symptoms and shorten the duration of the outbreak or, if taken as soon as symptoms appear, can sometimes prevent sores from forming.
  • WebMD has an overview of cold sore treatment[11] .
Additional costs:
  • To help prevent cold sores, it is recommended in between outbreaks to wear sunscreen and lip balm with sun protection, which usually cost less than $10. For example, Herpecin-L lip balm[12] costs about $6.
Discounts:
  • The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services offers a locator[13] for clinics with sliding fee scales based on income.
  • Some drug manufacturers offer patient assistance programs. Any patient without prescription drug coverage who also is not eligible for Medicare typically qualifies for Together Rx Access[14] , a discount card that offers 25-40% off many brand-name drugs.
  • Some companies offer coupons or rebates to lower copays for patients with prescription drug coverage. For example, Denavir.com has a coupon[15] to limit the copay to $15 for eligible patients on copays up to $60. Zovirax.com offers a similar discount.
Shopping for cold sore treatment:
  • A family doctor can diagnose and prescribe treatment for cold sores. The American Medical Association offers a doctor locator[16] , and FindUrgentCare.com offers an urgent care center locator[17] .
  • The Mayo Clinic offers a guide to cold sore symptoms[18] , what a cold sore looks like and when to see a doctor for a possible cold sore.
Material on this page is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice. Always consult your physician or pharmacist regarding medications or medical procedures.
 
post E-mail post Post  
CostHelper News


Top 7 Ways to Trim Pet Expenses
Pets, for many, are part of the family; another member that needs love, feeding and treatment, just like anyone else in the household. || Posted September 18 2013


Forgotten Expenses In a Home Addition Budget
Items like construction costs, permit fees or debris removal aren't the only expenses to consider when calculating the total costs of a home remodeling project. || Posted August 5 2013

‣ All CostHelper Blog Posts


What People Are Paying - Recent Comments


 

Comment On Your Experience With Cold Sore Treatment
 
Subject:  *
Amount Spent:  * not covered by insurance
Treatment: Clinic or Health Center: 
Provider:   
Comments: 
Purchased:  Year: 
City:  * State:  *
 
Information about you:
Email:  * Email addresses are not displayed.
Name:  This is the name we'll display with your post.
me on this computer
*=required field.
 



External Resources:
  1.  www.anylabtestnow.com/for-individuals/stds/
  2.  www.abreva.com/
  3.  www.drugstore.com/search/search_results.asp?N=0&Ntx=mode%2Bmatchallpartial&Ntk=All&srch...
  4.  www.jfponline.com/Pages.asp?AID=5151
  5.  i.walmartimages.com/i/if/hmp/fusion/customer_list.pdf
  6.  www.emedicinehealth.com/cold_sores/page7_em.htm
  7.  www.blairex.com/BLZilactin-B.php
  8.  www.abreva.com/
  9.  www.zovirax.com/
  10.  us.gsk.com/products/assets/us_valtrex.pdf
  11.  www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/tc/cold-sores-treatment-overview
  12.  www.drugstore.com/herpecin-l-lip-balm-stick-spf-30/qxp15808
  13.  findahealthcenter.hrsa.gov/Search_HCC.aspx
  14.  www.togetherrxaccess.com/p/prescription-savings/about-together-rx-access/enroll.aspx
  15.  www.denavir.com/
  16.  extapps.ama-assn.org/doctorfinder/recaptcha.jsp
  17.  www.findurgentcare.com/
  18.  www.mayoclinic.com/health/cold-sore/DS00358/DSECTION=symptoms
More Health & Personal Care Topics
Check Out All Costs for Health & Personal Care How Much Does an Ambulance Cost? How Much Does an Albuterol Inhaler Cost? How Much Does an MRI Cost?

Search Thousands of Topics on CostHelper.com

 
Today's Featured Cost Articles

About CostHelper
CostHelper is based in Silicon Valley and provides consumers with unbiased price information about thousands of goods and services. Our writers are experienced journalists who adhere to our strict editorial ethics policy.

CostHelper Community
Ventolin/Albuterol inhaler
Paid: 67.53
If purchased at WalMart on March 24th, 2017, the co-pay would have been 67.53; if ordered from the Humana Mail Order Pharmacy, the cost would have been $50.I could not afford it... [more]
-vineyridge
Albuterol Inhaler Cost
Lizard
Paid: 150.00
The beardie was adopted for $20.00 at a local repticon. Tank was over 30 inch long, cost less than $70-80 at Petsmart during Xmas sale. Everything else were bought online from Dr. Foster, Amazon and Chewy... [more]
-Gaga
Pet Lizard Cost
My Entertainment Company Went Above & Beyond The Call Of Duty
Paid: 2100.00
All I can say is WOW. When I hired Evan Nine Entertainment, I had no idea I was going to get so much extra for my money. His company handled The DJ/MC, Photography, Uplighting, and Wedding Officiant... [more]
-Linda Grayson
Wedding DJ Cost
TTE 93306
Paid: 1208.00
Went for echo at cardiologist's office. Hadn't met deductible and my BCBS estimate online was $408 done in doctor's office. Well, the cardiology office had been acquired by Mission Hospital so they charged their rate which was ~$1980... [more]
-C. V. Wynne, M.D.
Echocardiogram Cost
Broken drain line replacment
Paid: 7600.00
After Roto-Rooter inspected the drain line which could not get passed 35 feet from the cleanout, serviceman suggested for a new cleanout to be installed near the area where the camera could not pass, this at a cost of $1,450... [more]
-#IFEELTAKEN
Sewer Line Replacement Cost
Cost should be capped
Paid: 4550.00
In August of 2014, my husband need to be transported to the helicopter pad at the hospital and we received a bill for $4,550 and when we questioned why so much no one could provide a valid answer. The helicopter pad is less than ... [more]
-dkoz
Ambulance Cost