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admin 21.02.2016

If you have already contracted chicken pox in your childhood or anytime later, you may be assuming that you have been relieved from this painful infectious disease for the rest of your life.
There have been some studies which were recently conducted on shingles and more light has been shed on this rare infectious disease. Recent studies have also revealed a significant increase of the risk of shingles in the age group of 31-40 years old.
Although you may be over with just one episode of shingles in your lifetime, there are chances that it may reoccur again.
It begins with a rash that may be accompanied by intense pain, uncontrollable itching and tingling in the area where the rash develops. The rash is seen as a single stripe and it is usually observed on either the left or the right side of the torso.
Though shingles is not a life-threatening condition, it can cause a lot of pain and misery during its episode. A common complication of shingles is a medical condition termed as Post-herpetic neuralgia (PHN).
Though these are all rare, it is best to seek medical care early to shorten the episode of shingles as much as possible. To control the pain, a lot of research has been done and a promising treatment was suggested using skin patches comprising of the ingredient capsaicin, which is a prime ingredient found in chili peppers.
Wet compresses and lotions that control itching such as the calamine lotion can be used to avoid irritating the blister or rash.
Though shingles is not contagious, but it may pose a threat for those who have never contracted chicken pox. Stay away from pregnant women who have never contracted chicken pox and also from premature babies, because they have a weak immune system. Vaccination is available to prevent shingles and the dreadful long-term PHN that follows with it. The best of all thirst quenchers is water and it’s known to have multiple health benefits.
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Shingles is an infection of a nerve and the surrounding skin surface that is supplied by the nerve, caused by the varicella-zoster virus. Shingles is characterized by a painful, blistering skin rash that typically lasts 2 to 4 weeks.
You will also see introductions at the end of some sections to any recent developments that have been covered by MNT's news stories. Shingles is a painful infection of the nerve supplying an area of skin and is accompanied by a localised skin rash. Older people and those with a weakened immune system are at greater risk for developing shingles. Shingles can exhibit complications in some individuals; the most common is postherpetic neuralgia. For some individuals, a vaccine is available to reduce the likelihood of developing shingles. All herpes viruses are able to hide in the nervous system, where they can remain latent for months or even years after initial infection. The blistering skin rash associated with shingles is usually isolated to one or more bands, called dermatomes, on one side of the trunk, around the waistline, or clustered on one side of the face.7 These dermatomes correspond to a specific sensory nerve that exits from the brain or spinal cord, which is why infection of a specific nerve causes isolated skin lesions rather than a body-wide rash and nerve pain. The pain from shingles can be mild to severe and is characterized as a burning, shooting pain or itching, generally on one side of the body. The development of a blistering skin rash in this pattern indicates the reactivation of the dormant virus and its migration from the central nervous system to the skin, causing inflammation along the way. Most adults with the dormant virus never experience an outbreak of shingles, which is contingent upon something (as yet unknown) reactivating the virus.
In the majority of shingles cases there is no known trigger that causes the varicella-zoster virus to begin to multiply again.
Diseases - diseases including certain cancers, namely leukemia and lymphoma, and HIV or AIDS compromise the immune system.


Medications - immunosuppressive drugs to prevent transplanted organ rejection and prolonged steroid use, such as prednisone. Children - youngsters whose mothers had chickenpox late in pregnancy or had chickenpox in infancy themselves.
A new study claims to have ruled out a link between childhood vaccination against varicella (chickenpox) and the increased incidence of herpes zoster (shingles) in adults, according to an article published in the Annals of Internal Medicine. A recent report published in the Archives of Dermatology finds that people who have herpes zoster - commonly known as shingles - are more likely to have family members who also have had the condition.
A new study from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, finds that having asthma may increase the risk of developing shingles. On the next page we look at the signs and symptoms of shingles, tests and diagnosis plus prevention and treatments for shingles. The incidence of herpes zoster in a United States administrative database, Insinga RP, Itzler RF, Pellissier JM, Saddier P, Nikas AA, JGIM, 20(8):748-53, August 2005. Varicella–Zoster Vaccine for the Prevention of Herpes Zoster, Kimberlin DW1, Whitley RJ, NEJM, 356(13):1338-43, March 2007. Infection with varicella-zoster virus after marrow transplantation, Locksley RM, Flournoy N, Sullivan KM, Meyers JD, JID, 152(6):1172-81, December 1985.
Clinical relevance of quantitative varicella-zoster virus (VZV) DNA detection in plasma after stem cell transplantation, Kalpoe JS, Kroes AC, Verkerk S, Claas EC, Barge RM, Beersma MF, Bone Marrow Transplantation, 38(1):41-6, July 2006. Shingles (Herpes Zoster) Transmission, CDCLast updated 19 October 2012, Accessed 7 April 2014.
Shingles (Herpes Zoster), Clinical Overview, CDCLast updated 16 January 2014, Accessed 7 April 2014. For any corrections of factual information, or to contact our editorial team, please see our contact page.
Please note: Any medical information published on this website is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with a health care professional. Learn about pneumococcal disease - an infection caused by a common type of bacteria known as pneumococcus. Lyme disease is caused by the Borrelia burgdorferi bacterium and is transmitted to humans and animals through the bite of infected ticks.
Licence fees: A licence fee will be charged for any media (low or high resolution) used in your project. Well, the truth is you may be still at a risk of contracting something similar to it and equally, or in some cases more intensely, painful. Although it is rare, those who have not experienced chicken pox in their lifetime are at a higher risk to be attacked by the virus.
For those with extremely weak immune systems, there are chances of even 3 episodes in their lifetime!
Studies conducted on some patients suffering from shingles complained of intense pain associating it almost next to labor pains!
Those who have an outbreak of shingles on some part of their face are highly recommended to seek medical attention as soon as possible. Clinical testing using the skin patch proved useful for some patients who had contracted shingles and the pain had alleviated for several weeks. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it is recommended to get a single shot vaccinated for old citizens 60 years and above.
Even after the rash has dissipated, some people continue to experience nerve pain for months, or even years. After recovery from chickenpox, the virus remains in the body and lies dormant in the central nervous system. Shingles cannot develop as a secondary eruption if an earlier exposure to chickenpox has not occurred. The pain and the blistering skin rash do not usually cross over the midline of the body, which is one of the reasons shingles is fairly easy to diagnose compared to other diseases with dermatological manifestations. One suggestion is that shingles is an opportunistic condition that occurs when something compromises the immune system, alerting the virus to reactivate.
There are vaccines available to curb the risk of contracting shingles, and in the case you have been attacked by the virus again, early medical treatment can speed up recovery and reduce the risk of complications.


The risk, however, is higher for older people and the reason is usually due to a weaker immune system. The rash transitions into a blister that usually fills with fluid and then the crust that scabs over a period of 7 to 10 days and lasts up to 4 weeks. It doesn’t break out like chicken pox, but some people with extremely weak immune systems may actually experience a shingles breakout like chicken pox, also widespread, but this happens rarely.
An outbreak anywhere near the eyes can be extremely harmful and may lead to permanent loss of vision if not cared for properly.
As soon as you notice signs and symptoms of shingles and have proper diagnosis, you can start with the medications. There is not really a need to get vaccinated in your 50s as it won’t be effective and pretty much a waste. This condition is known as postherpetic neuralgia or PHN, and is the most common complication of shingles. Shingles is most common in people over the age of 50, about half of all cases occur in men and woman age 60 years and older. Once you pass the phase of chickenpox, the virus shelters itself in a dormant state in your body around the spinal cord region near the brain. The virus reactivates from its dormant stage when symptoms like recurring stress, anxiety and aging weaken the immune system.
Getting vaccinated for chickenpox doesn’t necessarily help in avoiding the contracting of shingles. In some rare cases, shingles triggers other medical conditions like pneumonia, blindness, hearing issues, swelling in the brain and in some extreme cases, it can also lead to death. The pain from PHN usually subsides in a few months or weeks, but some people suffer for many years with PHN. The earlier you start taking them, the shorter will be the episode of shingles and the severity of the disease will be greatly quelled.
The virus infects sensory nerves, and causes the outbreak of small blisters on the skin supplied by the infected nerves. Many years later there is still a chance for the virus to reactivate itself and breakout in a condition known as “shingles”. Some medicines like the immunosuppressive drugs taken by those with allergies or organ transplants are also linked to triggering shingles. Other symptoms include dizziness, weakness, fever, mild persistent headaches and upset tummy.
The pain that is induced during the illness can also be quelled using some specific pain killers. A healthy immune system is the best preventive measure to be saved from the miserable disease and the agonizing pain that lingers with it. The blisters last around two weeks, after which the area is intensely painful due to nerve damage.
Those suffering from certain medical conditions that affect the immune system like HIV, leukemia and lymphoma are also at a greater risk of developing shingles. Post herpetic neuralgia spans for a month and may diminish or may continue to be persistent for many years.
Keeping stress levels low, reducing anxiety and depression, maintaining a healthy diet and sleeping well are all key points for a healthy immune system. The age factor cannot be dealt with as the immune system will lose some of its functionality and that is inevitable. Early treatment with antiviral drugs can prevent the pain, but the virus can lie dormant in nerves for years, and nearly always recurs.
Those suffering from PHN have difficulty in their day to day activities such as eating, sleeping and doing the normal chores. But what is possible is that you keep your body healthy and stay active as much as possible.




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