Shingles (infection)

Shingles (herpes zoster) is a viral disease caused by a virus similar to that which causes chicken pox. Persons affected by the disease experience painful skin rash with blisters that occur along a particular nerve path.

2,176 Questions
Skin Care
Shingles (infection)

Are there cures for shingles?

There is no cure for shingles, but treatment may shorten the length of illness and prevent complications. Treatment options include:

  • Antiviral medicines to reduce the pain and duration of shingles.
  • Pain medicines, antidepressants, and topical creams to relieve long-term pain.

antibiotic treatment

Shingles is caused by a virus called Herpes zoster, sometimes years after having chicken pox; no one knows what causes the virus to re-activate but is often preceded by stressful situations or a weakened immune system.

Over-the-counter (OTC) antihistamines (Benadryl) and topical numbing creams (Lidocaine cream), "Nupercaine or Benadryl jell can relieve the itching and pain.

Cold tap water compresses can be applied to sooth the blisters and prevent infection. Once the blisters have opened using mild soap and water and petroleum jelly will prevent the skin from becoming too dry or inflamed.

Some doctors now prescribe antiviral medications; acyclovir (Zovirax), valacyclovir (Valtrex), and famciclovir (Famvir). If started as soon as the flair up starts, they can decrease the pain and duration of the outbreak. Corticosteroids are used to decrease inflammation.

A severe outbreak may need to be treated with pain medication if OTC Tylenol or Ibuprofen is not helpful see your doctor.

The weeping blisters contain the virus and is contagious to individuals who are susceptible to the chickenpox virus, so skin to skin contact with anyone who could catch the chicken pox, including new born babies, needs to be avoided.

The following are treatments other sufferers have tried, please check with your physician before using a home remedy: Acupuncture, Brookskin liniment, soaking in a bath of Epsom salts, fresh juices from an aloe plant can be applied as often as needed, Calamine lotion, Destine (diaper rash cream, Butt paste (diaper rash cream) bathing in or a paste made from Oatmeal bath to be soothing.

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Health
Conditions and Diseases
Skin Care
Shingles (infection)

Can you get shingles again?

Yes. Ask your health care professional when the shingles are gone if you should have a vaccination against shingles. These are available, safe and effective. However, they can be costly and some insurance plans do not cover them. Find if you need one, can take one, where to get one and how much it costs, through discussions with your health care professional and your pharmacist.
Yes u can get Shingle's again

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Shingles (infection)

Can you get Shingles on the face near the mouth?

YES

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Conditions and Diseases
Alternative Treatments for Conditions or Diseases
Aromatherapy and Essential Oils
Shingles (infection)

Are shingles of the body contagious?

Yes, it is possible to pass on certain strains of the virus when the blisters are open and leaking.

Remember to stay away from the elderly, young, and infirm during this time.

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Health
Shingles (infection)

Is shingles a communicable disease?

Technically yes, but only through direct contact with the wounds, blisters or rashes of the person having the shingles disease.

A healthy person cannot get shingles if informal contact is made with someone suffering from shingles. This infection can't be transmitted if a person suffering from shingles sneezes or coughs. Shingles can't pass through the air.

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Shingles (infection)

When is shingles no longer contagious?

The medical term for the condition "shingles" is herpes-zoster and it's caused by the varicella-zoster virus, or VZV. VZV is a member of the herpesvirus family and is responsible for both chicken pox (initial infection) and herpes zoster (reactivated infection).

VZV is no longer contagious once the open blisters have crusted over and there's no more drainage. Understand that h. zoster isn't contagious. This is a condition that results when VZV is reactivated. If some one who has not previously been exposed to VZV should transmit this virus to his own respiratory tract, this person would contract chicken pox, not h. zoster. H. zoster cannot occur unless a person has first had chicken pox. The virus must already be in the system and because VZV belongs to the herpesvirus family, it will remain in the body for life.

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Conditions and Diseases
Rashes
Skin Disorders
Shingles (infection)

Will the shingles rash appear on the elbow?

yes because i have had it on the elbow before.

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Health
Chickenpox
Shingles (infection)

Can chickenpox cause shingles to recur?

Shingles are not triggered by subsequent exposure to chickenpox.

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Shingles (infection)

Can shingles pain reoccur years later?

Yes it can reoccur years later. I had them 10 years ago and they came back this year after getting a sunburn which apparently triggered the new batch.

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Conditions and Diseases
Shingles (infection)

Can shingles be fatal?

according to another answer on answer.com, i think yes they can be fatal. but i am not totally sure. i have the same question for a report I'm doing on chicken pox and shingles. sorry!
Herpes Zoster isn't fatal.

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Health
Chickenpox
Shingles (infection)

Can you get shingles from someone who has chickenpox?

M

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Shingles (infection)
Chickenpox

Can you get chickenpox and shingles at the same time?

A person who has shingles can infect others with chicken pox, but only if those persons (usually children) never had chicken pox before. If a person with shingles is around a person/child who already had chicken pox, the other people won't get chicken pox or shingles.

The defining factors in shingles are:

  • The person already had chicken pox
  • The person is generally over 50 years old
  • The person may also have a compromised immune system
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Health
Conditions and Diseases
Skin Care
Shingles (infection)

How do you cure shingles?

See your doctor;

Seek professional medical attention, because nothing you do at home can treat and eliminate the shingles virus by itself. This is a highly painful disease and the sooner it is treated the sooner you will get relief.

Medicate:

The best treatment for the shingles virus is to begin a course of medications as prescribed by your doctor. Most likely you will be given a combination of three types of medications. First, you will be given an antiviral drug to deal with the virus itself and eliminate it.

Get some rest:

The best thing you can do for yourself to treat the shingles virus attacking you is to get some much needed rest. Take off from work. Sleep more than usual. Don't do anything physically straining while you are working to get the virus under control. Your body needs to put all it's energy and resources into fighting off the shingles virus.

Wash the rash and blisters:

Make sure you are keeping the affected area clean, cool and moist. Often times a cool bath is suggested. Regular soap, without perfumes and special additives is best. You might want to follow up a washing with some sort of topical cream. Your doctor can help you decide which cream would be best for shingles and provide the best soothing relief.

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As you may be aware, shingles is caused by a virus, the same one that causes chickenpox. Basically it is a re-emergence of the chickenpox virus. The virus is usually contained to an area of skin called a dermatome. This is the descriptive name for an area of skin supplied by a particular group of nerves. While the rash you have might spread along this dermatome, it almost never crosses into another one. This means that if it isn't already on your face, it won't go there. Stress won't spread the virus, but being stressed will affect your immune system. The medicine your doctor gave you is almost certainly aciclovir, which is an anti-viral drug taken up to 5 times a day. This must be started as soon as possible and should not be stopped mid-way through the course of else it will not be as effective. Unfortunately this is the only medical way to treat a virus. The only other option is that painkillers which may be needed. The rash should subside by the end of the course. You should be aware that some patients experience persisting pain after the rash has gone, occasionally for up to 6 months. This can be treated readily with painkillers and neurotransmitter drugs such as gabapentin and you should see your doctor if you are worried about this.

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Unconfirmed Home Remedy

Find some Mountain Laurel tree (evergreen shrub). Take the leaves and boil them. Put the liquid in a spray bottle and spray the rash. My grandmother was cured from shingles after one month of application of this plant.

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Shingles (infection)

Can shingles outbreaks recur and if so for how long will they last?

Yes, shingles can recur. Shingles is a herpesvirus, specifically herpes zoster - the chickenpox virus. After a person is infected with chickenpox - usually as a child, the virus regresses to the nerve ganglia (groups of nerve cell bodies). It cannot be completely cured.

During times of stress or illness, the virus may re-activate, causing a rash usually preceded for several days by burning pain. The pain and rash is usually one sided and follows one dermatome (nerve distribution). The rash may last for up to a week before it subsides again. Typically, after the first episode, the pain and rash do not last as long as the first episode, however this may be variable.

Treatment is available. Antiviral medications, such as valacyclovir (Valtrex) have been proven to decrease the length of time of outbreaks. It does not prevent outbreaks, however.

Long time complications of shingles may include persistent pain in a dermatomal distribution. If the rash occurs on the face or near the eyes, you should be checked immediately. This condition is called zoster ophthalmicus, and may result in permanent blindness.

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Conditions and Diseases
Skin Care
Skin Disorders
Shingles (infection)

How long does the pain from shingles normally last?

  • 2 weeks to 4 months and the pain can be unbearable! I thought I had messed up my shoulder bad! It first started on my shoulder and felt like a bruise, then just a tiny quarter size rash appeared, after about a week I could barely use my arm so I went to the Dr. and she said it was shingles. I was so relieved that that my shoulder rotary cuff was not messed up and no surgery was needed! But the pain is real, my Dr. put me on Valtrex and Lortab, it still took almost a week for the pain to subside where I could actually use my arm again. It was almost impossible to get any sleep. It has been 2 weeks since it started and there is still some pain and throbbing but it is so much better now, so there is hope, just hang in there!
  • My husband has recently had shingles this is his 5th week of pain. He has gone back to work but is still in agony. His rash is clearing up, but the pain for him is tremendous. The doctor has prescribed him Co-codamol but it seems to be doing very little. His employees at work say that the pain should only last a week and they are giving him a hard time about it, which is making him very run down and tired. He is getting no sleep at night and can't settle.
  • I have shingles and I suggest that your husband go back to his Doctor for stronger pain meds. I am on Morphine patches for the pain and its been 5 weeks for me now. The rash is almost gone, but the pain hasn't. My Doctor says the pain is Postherpetic Neurqalgia. And one of the most difficult pains to control. Remember to be very determined when talking to Doctor, don't let him just shrug off the pain.
  • As below and in other answers, the rash will clear up in two to three weeks, but the pain is intense, and can go on for much longer. In my case, a friend said that it is an illness that can start when a person is run down, and a bit exhausted. After three weeks I took her advice, and started eating lots of rich nutritious food, mince pies (it was before Christmas), chocolate cheese cakes, frittatas, etc. I even nearly tried her remedy of Guinness with condensed milk. I would say that I started to feel better for the first time after that.
  • I have had shingles for about four weeks. The pain started deep in my ribs, several ribs still feel bruised. It was initially diagnosed as a muscle strain, so it was too late to benefit from the anitiviral. The rash is minimal, just two patches, one on the shoulder blade, the other just under my left breast. The rash never oozed, looked more like insect or spider bites. I take prednisone, neurontin and Tylenol with codeine. I read that it's important to take extra vitamin C, so I use a packet of Emeren -C every day. I tried the lidoderm patch but it irritated my skin. I try to dress in light layers of cotton clothing, by day's end nothing is comfortable. I guess that I am having a milder form of shingles pain, I have been able to go to school (I'm a teacher) and with Valium I do get sleep at night. My husband rubs my back every night, and it's the only thing that really comforts me. He uses a light touch, especially on the left side where the rash and pain are, but it seems that the light movement of his hand, which warms as he massages, really helps. The last few days, I seem to have more energy and more tolerance for the pain.
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Conditions and Diseases
Shingles (infection)

What are the demographics of demographics of shingles?

Approximately 500,000 cases of shingles occur every year in the United States. 20% of those who had chickenpox as children develop shingles at some time in their lives. People of all ages.can be affected, but the incidence increases with age.

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Men's Health
Shingles (infection)

Can shingles make a man sterile?

Only in extreme cases

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Dog Health
Chickenpox
Shingles (infection)

Can a dog get shingles or chickenpox?

Most human illnesses and infections do not transfer to animals, and most animal illnesses and infections do not transfer to humans. You can check with your vet, but you should be safe to pet your dog or cat. However, do wash your hands before and afterwards. Don't let your pet or any person touch the open sores.
No. The virus that causes chicken pox affects humans and a few other primates, such as gorillas. Most viruses, bacterias, fungi etc are species specific. Some of the few that can cross species are ringworm or some of the tick-borne diseases such as Lyme.
A dog can't get chickenpox. Chickenpox only affects humans and a few other primates.
No because Animals can not get illnesses from humans just like humans can not get illnesses from animals

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Home Improvement
Building and Carpentry
Shingles (infection)

How many bundles of shingles needed for 200 square feet of roof?

It says on the side of the box of shingles how many square foot it willl cover so figure that out and multiple tilll.you hit two hundred say each box did ten square foot you would nned twenty boxes,

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Shingles (infection)

Is shingles contagious?

Yes, shingles, which is the adult version of chicken pox, is quite dangerous.
Shingles is contagious to people who have not had chicken pox. They continue to be contagious until the blisters have scabbed over, having diabetes does not make it worse or more dangerous. See related links.
Not to anyone who has had their bout of Chickenpox.
Type your answer here... ONLY IN THE FIRST 7 DAYS WHILE THEY ARE STILL CONTAGIOUS AND YOU TOUCH AREAS.
Shingle or herpes is contagious.
Nope.
After you have chickenpox (usually as a child), the virus that causes it stays inactive in your body inside certain nerve cells. Most of the time your immune system keeps the virus in these cells. So if you had the virus as a child it is very unlikely that you will develop shingles.

However, if you have never had the virus, there is a very high chance that you may develop it.
I believe a child who has not had chickenpox could get the chickenpox (not shingles) from someone who has shingles. The shingles would need to be blistered with some drainage, which is why it is recommended that those areas be covered until they are scabbed over. Covering the areas and using good handwashing technique should make all the difference in preventing the spread of the illness to others.
no- you get shingles from your own chicken pox virus. However, a person who has not had chicken pox can get chicken pox from a person with shingles.
Shingles are reactivated chickenpox virus someone who never had chickenpox could catch it but usually would need close comtact. Most worrying would be a person with a lowered immune system like someone on cancer treatment.

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Skin Care
Shingles (infection)

How do you stop reoccurring outbreaks of shingles?

There is no known way to prevent outbreaks of shingles. The disease has been treated with acyclovir, taken five times daily, or given intravenously in severe cases. Two newer drugs, famciclovir and galaciclovir, seem to be more effective against the pain of shingles and need to be taken only three times each day.

L-Lysine supplements might help since Shingles is a herpes virus. I know that it really helps prevent cold sores.

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Health
Shingles (infection)

Can you sunbathe with shingles?

No

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Shingles (infection)

Can you get shingles more than once?

The short answer is yes. Shingles are brought on by the chicken pox virus (Herpes Zoster), which lodge in the nerve bundles of the spine after a person has the pox. Shingles are brought on in adults by conditions in the body that are still being studied, but stress is thought to be a primary catalyst.

Once a person experiences shingles, which are very painful, I'm sure they hope they will never get another attack, but it is possible. Some people also report that they have continued nerve sensitivity (neuropathy) for up to a year (or more) after recovering from shingles.
Yes you can. The cases can vary in severity. If you are over 50 you may be able to get the shingles vaccine, which can cut the chances of recurrence..

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Infectious Diseases
Chickenpox
Shingles (infection)

Can you get shingles from someone if you had chickenpox?

No, you can't catch shingles from someone if you've had chicken pox. However, the chicken pox virus remains dormant for years and re-emerges as shingles. It often strikes people over 50, but does occur in younger people.

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Skin Care
Shingles (infection)

How do you find information on using L-lysene for shingles?

My experience with L-lysene has to do with cold sores on the mouth (same virus as shingles, though), and I don't know where to tell you to find information on it, but I know a great many people who use it. I suspect the answer to be similar in both situations.

At the first sign of outbreak, begin taking 2-3 capsules of L-lysene, 3-4 times a day. Continue until the outbreak begins to get better. With cold sores, this greatly shortens the duration of the outbreak. I hope it works for shingles too.

Mindell's Vitamin Bible is a good source of information for holistic medication. Lysene is an amino acid that your body needs. It works for shingles, and herpes simplex I & II.

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