Pros: Fairly large tube for what you pay. Kills pain. Hastens healing.
Cons: Not as effective as prescription medicine. Still rather pricey.
Hello once again to fellow cold sore sufferers. It seems like I just wrote this review a week ago. Actually, I did, except for Abreva.
This review ought to be a bit more positive, because I like Zilactin.
As I understand it, but don't me to this, there are three types of cold sore sufferers. The first group gets them frequently. The next group gets a couple-few per year. The last group is immune. I think my aunt told me this, and she used to sell drugs for a major pharmaceutical company (and she's in the first group).
What's the best way to treat a cold sore? As quickly as possible, and with an effective medicine. The sooner you get to it, the less the pain will be, and the lesser the duration of the sore. It's all about nipping it in the bud. That first burning sensation you get - go straight to the rest room and look in the mirror. See if you notice any tiny, white bumps on your lip.
Zilactin is an OTC medince (over the counter). There are many OTC cold sore medicines. Some are cheap - I haven't tried those. Nobody likes pain, and I'm not going to risk going through pain over $10. Abreva is another OTC cold sore medicine, and I reviewed that last week.
I have used prescription cold medicine in the past, and it is a cream-style medicine. I don't know this, but I imagine there are more than one cream-style prescription cold sore medicine. This stuff works the best, from my experience. It immediately hits the sore, relieves the pain, and contains the virus. The sore doesn't get any bigger.
Zilactin works much the same, except it is not a cream. It is high in alcohol content, it is an orange-colored gel. It stings when I put it on my sore. The stinging soon turns to numbness, and then forms a shell around the sore. This is really nice, because with the cream, that cream can smear when bumping your lip with your hand or when eating or drinking.
The Zilactin stays in place. In fact, you really have to pick off that shell every morning with a warm cloth and your finger nails, and then put on a new shell. You should apply Zilactin liberally, but from my experience, Zilactin requires far less application - in volume and frequency - than does a cream-style medicine. That shell is very protective, and it shields you from pain and allows you to function without worrying about the sore.
Anything not to like? It does cost around $15 for a tube. But you get much more than other OTC medicines. The Zilactin tube is much larger than the Abreva tube, for example. The Zilactin tube is plastic, comes packaged in a paper box much like an anti-itch cream for insect bites.
$15 is a lot, but that Zilactin tube should last for a half dozen cold sores. I just finished treating a cold sore with Abreva, and I have almost no Abreva left in the tiny 2 gram Abreva tube.
Still, the best way to treat cold sores is with a prescription medicine. I highly recommend that you get a prescription from your doctor. The problem with this is that you don't go to your doctor to treat a cold sore, right? Well, make a mental note, put a sticky note on your forehead for a couple months, whatever it takes, and remember to get a prescription from your doctor. If you have a decent health insurance plan (I guess that's not likely), your copay is probably going to be less than the cost of an OTC cold sore medicine (one that actually works, though).
But if you're in a pinch, stop by the local drug store and pick up Zilactin. It'll relieve the pain and hasten the healing. Your best bet to find Zilactin is at a drug store, because I just went to a major chain grocery store and they didn't have Zilactin (that's how I got stuck with Abreva).
Good luck, and I wish you fewer cold sores!
I highly recommend Zilactin.