Monday, May 27, 2024

Do’s And Don Ts When You Have Shingles

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How Common Is Shingles

Shingles affects 1 out of every 3 people in the United States. More than 1 million cases of shingles are diagnosed every year. The risk of shingles increases as you get older, with about half the cases occurring in people over the age of 50. Shingles develops in about 10% of people who have had chickenpox at an earlier time in their life.

Articles On Shingles Treatment

The virus that causes chickenpox is also what causes shingles. Itâs called varicella zoster. It can lie quietly in your nerves for decades after causing chickenpox but suddenly wake up and become active.

The main symptom of shingles is a painful rash that comes up on one side of your body or face. See your doctor as soon as you can if you think you might have this condition.

Your doctor may want to put you on medications to control your infection and speed up healing, cut inflammation, and ease your pain. They include:

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Subcutaneous Injection Of Telbat Is Off

When a specific use of a drug has been approved by the FDA, the instructions for use for the drug are printed on a package label that is inserted into each box containing the drug. When a particular use of the drug is not explicitly described on this printed label, the use is considered off-label.

All of the individual drugs in the TELBAT solution have FDA approval to be sold commercially. However, the combination of these drugs has yet to be approved by the FDA, and therefore a TELBAT solution for treating Herpes virus infection is considered to be off-label and cannot be sold commercially. Importantly, the FDA does not object to a physician using TELBAT solution to treat his/her own patients. Similarly, the subcutaneous injection of acyclovir is off-label.

Because TELBAT is a patented composition, it is illegal for any physician to provide TELBAT and charge a fee for the service unless the physician has a licensed to do so. An FDA requirement for approval of TELBAT to be sold commercially is a clinical trial of TELBAT that establishes safety and efficacy of TELBAT. Dr. Klein is in the process of requesting FDA approval of an Investigational New Drug application for permission to conduct a clinical trial of TELBAT for treating the most severe shingles pain. In pilot studies of TELBAT for treating shingles Dr. Klein has shown that highly dilute acyclovir solution can be injected subcutaneously without toxicity.

Who Should Not Get Shingrix

Is this shingles? Just got to Cancun. At the hospital doctor. He thinks ...

You should not get Shingrix if you:

  • Have ever had a severe allergic reaction to any component of the vaccine or after a dose of Shingrix.
  • Currently have shingles.
  • Currently are pregnant. Women who are pregnant should wait to get Shingrix.

If you have a minor illness, such as a cold, you may get Shingrix. But if you have a moderate or severe illness, with or without fever, you should usually wait until you recover before getting the vaccine.

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Is There A Way I Can Keep From Being Infected With Chickenpox

Yes, make sure all your vaccines are up to date, especially if you are planning a pregnancy. Vaccination is the best way to protect yourself and those you love. If you are not immune, you should be vaccinated. You will receive two doses of varicella vaccine one month apart. You should avoid becoming pregnant for at least one month after the last vaccination. Varicella vaccine should not be given to pregnant women. If you are pregnant, have your healthcare provider give you the varicella vaccine after your baby is delivered.

Is There A Shingles Vaccine

In the UK there is a shingles vaccine immunisation programme for people aged 70 years to protect against herpes zoster. There is also a catch-up programme which offers the vaccine to certain people aged between 70 and 79 years who may have previously missed out on immunisation. The vaccine is licensed for people aged over 50 years, and if you are not eligible for the vaccine on the NHS, your pharmacist may be able to provide the vaccine as a private service.

The chickenpox vaccine is not routinely given to children in the UK but is offered to people who are in close contact with someone who is particularly vulnerable to chickenpox or its complications eg, people with a weakened immune system.

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How Long Is Shingles Contagious

Similar to chickenpox, shingles is a contagious illness. But, before we address how long you may be contagious, we need to talk about how shingles spreads which might actually surprise you.

“Shingles is indeed contagious, but it can only be spread to people who haven’t yet had chickenpox, or the chickenpox vaccine. In these cases, the shingles virus typically spreads via direct contact with the opened blisters of your rash. After being infected, a person doesn’t develop shingles, though he or she develops chickenpox,” explains Dr. Brown.

Since you can’t really know who is and who isn’t susceptible to chickenpox, it’s important to take safety measures if you have shingles.

“When you have shingles, you’re considered contagious until your open sores crust and scab over. This generally takes between 7 to 10 days,” says Dr. Brown. “Depending on where your rash develops on your body and where you work, you may be able to return to work before your shingles dry up.”

Before your rash dries up, Dr. Brown recommends the following to prevent spreading shingles to others:

  • Make sure your rash is covered with gauze
  • Limit interaction with other people if your shingles rash is on your face
  • Consult with your doctor about returning to work if you work in a medical setting or nursing home, as well as if you interact with people frequently while at work

Can Shingles Come Back

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Given that shingles results from the varicella zoster virus reactivating some amount of time after having chickenpox, you may be wondering if the virus can…re-reactivate after having shingles.

“Once shingles clears up, the virus simply goes back into hiding and, unfortunately, it can reactivate again in the future,” says Dr. Brown. “As far as the likelihood of shingles reoccurring, that’s still largely up for debate. One study found that the chance of getting shingles a second time is about 5%, but other studies show this number to be lower.”

One way to reduce your risk of getting shingles twice is the same preventive measure that helps prevent you from ever getting it in the first place: the shingles vaccine.

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Can Shingles Be Prevented Or Avoided

The best way to prevent shingles is through vaccination. Vaccinate your children for chickenpox. This vaccine reduces their risk for getting chickenpox. You cant get shingles unless youve had chickenpox first.

When you are older, get the shingles vaccine. It is recommended for adults 50 years of age and older. It can prevent shingles. People who have had shingles should get the vaccine to help stop the disease from reoccurring. Common side effects of the vaccine are headache, plus redness, swelling, itching, and soreness at the injection site.

The shingles vaccine is not recommended for anyone who:

  • Has had an allergic reaction to gelatin or the antibiotic neomycin
  • Has an allergy to any component of the shingles vaccine
  • Has a weakened immune system due to conditions such as leukemia, HIV, or AIDS
  • Is receiving treatment for cancer
  • Is being treated with drugs that suppress their immune system, including high-dose steroids
  • Is pregnant or might become pregnant within 4 weeks of getting the vaccine

Seek Treatment Right Away

Many people have the mistaken impression that, like poison ivy, shingles is a nuisance rash that fades on its own. But in fact a shingles rash should alert people, especially in middle or old age, to seek immediate medical help, says Dr. Oaklander.

Rapid treatment with one of three antiviral drugs, acyclovir , valacyclovir , or famciclovir , can shorten a shingles attack and reduce the risk of serious damage, such as:

  • Long-term pain. Pain that lingers in the area of a healed shingles rash is called postherpetic neuralgia. This often-disabling pain can last several months to a year.
  • Prolonged itching. Many people are left with an itchy area from their shingles, which can be as disabling as chronic pain. It is most common on the head or neck.
  • Damage to vision and hearing. Pain and rash near an eye can cause permanent eye damage and requires an urgent ophthalmological exam. When the nerve to the ear is affected, it can permanently damage hearing or balance.
  • Strokes and heart attacks. A PLOS Medicinestudy that tracked about 67,000 people ages 65 and older who were newly diagnosed with shingles found that stroke risk more than doubled in the first week after the shingles diagnosis. The same study reported an increased risk for heart attacks in the three months after shingles, but the additional risk dissipated after six months.

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How To Manage Shingles Symptoms

Herpes zoster, or shingles, is a viral infection that affects at least one in three Americans at some point in their lives. This infection triggers a painful rash, which typically starts as a stripe of blisters on one side of your torso, but it can appear anywhere on the body.

The same virus that causes chickenpox causes shingles. The varicella-zoster virus, also known as Herpes zoster , is a painful acute infection caused by the reactivation of the dormant Herpes zoster virus, in an individual who has previously had chicken pox, which is caused by the varicella zoster virus . New onset Acute Herpes zoster can be extremely painful even after prompt treatment with standard oral antiviral medication, which include Acyclovir , valacyclovir and famciclovir . None of these rapidly eliminate severe shingles pain. Severe Herpes zoster infections of the face can require intravenous narcotics. The chronic, unremitting pain of postherpetic neuralgia can be devastating and incapacitating.

Although shingles doesnt threaten your life, this condition is typically quite painful. Unfortunately, the pain of shingles can persist long after the blisters heal. When this happens, youre diagnosed with a condition called chronic postherpetic neuralgia.

Keep reading to learn our top shingles management tips!

Who Is At Risk For Getting Shingles


People who have had chickenpox who are more likely to develop shingles include those:

  • With a weakened immune system .
  • Over the age of 50.
  • Who have been ill.
  • Who have experienced trauma.
  • Who are under stress.

The chickenpox virus doesnt leave your body after you have chickenpox. Instead, the virus stays in a portion of your spinal nerve root called the dorsal root ganglion. For the majority of people, the virus stays there quietly and doesn’t cause problems. Researchers aren’t always sure why the virus gets reactivated, but this typically occurs at times of stress.

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Are There Alternative Treatments

Some studies show that various alternative treatments, from acupuncture to supplements, can offer relief. The research isnât complete, but some shows promise. Check with your doctor before you try any of these:

TENS . This therapy uses tiny electrical pulses to relieve pain. A TENS unit is about the size of a smartphone and comes with small patches called electrodes. You put them over the painful area and turn the unit on and off as your pain comes and goes.

Traditional Chinese medicine: These treatments aim to restore balance in your body. They include acupuncture, the ancient practice of inserting very thin needles into your skin at specific points. Also, moxibustion and cupping, two types of heat therapy, are supposed to draw out toxins. These treatments may be done in combination.

Creams and other skin treatments: A mixture of liquid dimethyl sulfoxide and idoxuridine, an antiviral drug, may reduce swelling and the number of blisters you have when you put it on your rash. And chlorophyll, the chemical that gives plants their green color, is also used directly on the rash as a cream or saline solution.

Supplements: Youâll find a long list of herbs, pills, and oils that claim to relieve shingles. Most have no research to back them up, but there are a couple of exceptions. Papain, a protein found in papayas, is sold in capsules. And manuka and clover honeys can be put directly on your skin. Very early studies on both show they may be helpful.

What Are The Complications Of Shingles

Symptoms of shingles usually dont last longer than 3 to 5 weeks. However, complications can happen. The main complications that can result from shingles include:

  • Postherpetic neuralgia . The most common complication of shingles is called postherpetic neuralgia . This continuous, chronic pain lasts even after the skin lesions have healed. The pain may be severe in the area where the blisters were present. The affected skin may be very sensitive to heat and cold. If you had severe pain during the active rash or have impaired senses, you are at increased risk for PHN. The elderly are also at greater risk. Early treatment of shingles may prevent PHN. Pain relievers and steroid treatment may be used to treat the pain and inflammation. Other treatments include antiviral drugs, antidepressants, anticonvulsants, and topical agents.
  • Bacterial infection. A bacterial infection of the skin where the rash happens is another complication. Rarely, infections can lead to more problems, such as tissue death and scarring. When an infection happens near or on the eyes, a corneal infection can happen. This can lead to temporary or permanent blindness.

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Worst Way To Clean Asphalt Roof Shingles

1. Pressure Washer. Think about what happens to your roof during a hurricane or a storm with high winds. That tends to cause damage to your asphalt shingle roof, doesnt it? Pressure washers can propel water at speeds faster than 200 MPH which is far more pressure than most storms present. Using a pressure washer on your roof is a great way to rip, loosen, or dislodge shingles. Dont attempt to use this tool, even on stubborn roof stains.

2. Severe Chemicals. There are a lot of chemical products sold as a shortcut for various home cleaning jobs, but dont fall for it. Bleaches and harsh chemicals can certainly get rid of mold and mildew, but theyre toxic to humans and pets, will ruin your landscaping, and can cause damage to your roofeither by breaking down your shingles or corroding the metal flashing, valleys, and gutters.

3. Rough Tools. When youre figuring out how to clean moss off asphalt shingle roof, it can be tempting to scrape at it with a hand scraper or a harsh-bristle brush. Be very careful when using rough tools on your asphalt shingles since you can easily break them, rip them, or tear away the asphalt granules.

4. DIY Project . If you have the right experience and tools, then attempting to clean your roof isnt a big issue but it does present a lot of dangers. Roof cleaning isnt for everyone and its not recommended to climb up on your roof unless you have the necessary skills, experience, and tools to complete the job safely.

You Cannot Get Shingles From Someone With Chickenpox

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You cannot get shingles from someone with shingles or chickenpox.

But you can get chickenpox from someone with shingles if you have not had chickenpox before.

When people get chickenpox, the virus remains in the body. It can be reactivated later and cause shingles if someone’s immune system is lowered.

This can be because of stress, certain conditions, or treatments like chemotherapy.

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What Are The Possible Side Effects Of Shingrix

Studies show that Shingrix is safe. The vaccine helps your body create a strong defense against shingles. As a result, you are likely to have temporary side effects from getting the shots. The side effects might affect your ability to do normal daily activities for 2 to 3 days.

Most people got a sore arm with mild or moderate pain after getting Shingrix, and some also had redness and swelling where they got the shot. Some people felt tired, had muscle pain, a headache, shivering, fever, stomach pain, or nausea. Some people who got Shingrix experienced side effects that prevented them from doing regular activities. Symptoms went away on their own in about 2 to 3 days. Side effects were more common in younger people.

You might have a reaction to the first or second dose of Shingrix, or both doses. If you experience side effects, you may choose to take over-the-counter pain medicine such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen.

Guillain-Barré syndrome , a serious nervous system disorder, has been reported very rarely after Shingrix. There is also a very small increased risk of GBS after having shingles.

If you experience side effects from Shingrix, you should report them to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System . Your doctor might file this report, or you can do it yourself through the VAERS websiteexternal icon, or by calling 1-800-822-7967.

If you have any questions about side effects from Shingrix, talk with your doctor.

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