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Why do you recommend that wrestlers take Valtrex at Intensive Camps? Is it effective? Is it required?

Herpes Gladiatorum (aka "Mat Herpes") is a common skin infection in wrestling. For 10 years between 2003 and 2012, a research study on the prophylactic effects of Valacyclovir (e.g. Valtrex) was conducted at the J Robinson 28-Day Intensive Camp by Dr. B.J. Anderson of the University of Minnesota. The results, published in the Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine, indicate that taking 1 gram of the medication daily was shown to reduce the incidence of individual outbreaks by 89.5%. You may view the paper's abstract by clicking here, or if you would like to read the full study, email Dr. Anderson at and he will send you a copy free of charge. We strongly encourage all wrestlers at our Intensive Camps to begin a regimen of Valtrex 5 days before camp starts and continue it for the duration of camp. If you choose to not take Valtrex, you will need to sign a waiver form.

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