Tuesday, June 25, 2024

What Are The Early Signs Of Shingles

Do You Need To Stay Away From Children People Who Are Pregnant Have Cancer Or Anyone With A Weak Immune System After You Get The Zostavax Vaccine

Shingles: What you need to know about causes, symptoms, and prevention.

According to the CDC, its safe to be around babies and young children, pregnant women or anyone with a weakened immune system after you get the Zostavax vaccine. Even though the Zostavax vaccine contains a weakened live varicella-zoster virus, the CDC says theres no documented case of a person getting chickenpox from someone who has received the Zostavax vaccine. And remember: You cant get shingles unless youve already had chickenpox.

Shingles Treatment: Home Remedies

Bathing is generally allowed, and the affected area can be washed with soap and water. Cool compresses and anti-itching lotions such as calamine lotion may also provide relief from symptoms. An aluminum acetate solution can be used to help dry up the blisters and oozing. Application of petroleum jelly can also aid in healing. Over-the-counter antihistamines, such as diphenhydramine and pain medicines can also help provide relief.

Wearing loose clothing can help avoid extra pain from clothing rubbing against the rash. Avoid close skin-to-skin contact with others who have not had chickenpox, are ill, or who have a weakened immune system to avoid spread of the virus. People who do not have immunity to the virus may catch varicella by having direct contact with the lesions. In this way zoster is similar to cold sores, which are caused by a virus in the same family as varicella.

If You Get The Shingles Vaccine Does This Mean Youre 100% Protected From Getting Shingles

No. Just like most vaccines, getting vaccinated with a shingles vaccine doesnt provide 100% protection from disease. However, getting the shingles vaccine reduces your risk of developing shingles.

Even if you do develop shingles, youll be more likely to have a mild case. Also, youll be much less likely to develop postherpetic neuralgia, a painful condition that can follow a shingles outbreak.

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Home Remedies For Shingles

There can be no guarantees when using only home remedies for your shingles infection. Consult your doctor because it is always better to get medical help. Moreover, shingles is a serious infection that when left untreated, can cause debilitating pain.

  • Make sure that you take good care of your skin pores. Ensure that the blisters are kept covered most of the time to avoid spreading chickenpox to others.
  • Resist the urge to scratch your blisters because they will naturally dry up and fall off. Try to avoid scratching as much as possible since this will only cause the blisters to leak and help spread the infection further.
  • Use cool, moist compresses to help ease the discomfort. Lotions, such as calamine, may be applied after wet compresses. Try applying the wet compress first, and after your skin dries off naturally, apply the calamine lotion. It can help soothe the skin around the blisters and even aid in alleviating the itching sensation.
  • Baking soda and cornstarch are also known to help dry up the sores faster. Prepare a small paste using baking soda and cornstarch and then apply it directly onto the blisters. You should start seeing some immediate results.
  • The application of Burow’s solution also helps clean away the crusts, soothes the skin, and decreases oozing. So get hold of some and apply it on and around the blisters.
  • Topical creams also help relieve the inflammation on your skin. However, it is better if you start using it only after checking with your physician.

First Signs And Symptoms Of Shingles

Warning Signs of Shingles

Among the systemic symptoms that may appear in the first few days of the prodromal stage of shingles are:

  • Pain in a specific, localized area of the body
  • Sensitivity to light

The most telling first symptom of shingles typically is the pain. Often excruciating, the discomfort has been described as burning, stinging, tingly, prickly, itchy, numbing, achy, or shooting. It can be persistent or intermittent, but will always be limited to one side of the body.

Because the pain from shingles is localized, it can be mistaken for other conditions depending on where it’s focused.

For example, a stabbing or persistent pain on one side of the lower back may mistakenly be attributed to sciatica or a kidney problem. Shingles pain around the lips could suggest a cold sore coming on, while pain focused on the eye or ear might seem like the start of a migraine.

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S Of The Shingles Rash

If you have a rash of blisters on your skin or a rash that looks like any shown below, see your doctor immediately for a diagnosis. If you have shingles, its important to get treatment, preferably within 2 to 3 days.

If youve had the rash for longer than 2 to 3 days, its still important to see your doctor.

A typical shingles rash

Doctors often refer to this rash as the shingles band because it looks like a band that appears on one area of your body, as shown here.

A rash on one side of the body

A key that you have shingles is that the rash only develops on one side of your body.

Close-up of a shingles rash

The shingles rash often causes a cluster of tiny blisters. You may notice that the skin beneath the blisters is red and inflamed, as shown here.

The rash will also feel painful.

Blistering shingles rash on a man’s chest

Although the rash can begin in one area, you may notice that a few scattered blisters develop in other areas, as shown here.

Shingles rash on the palm of a man’s hand

While shingles tends to develop on your body or face, it can appear anywhere on your skin.

Complication: Ramsay Hunt Syndrome

Anyone with shingles symptoms on or around the ears should seek treatment immediately. This can lead to Ramsay Hunt syndrome if left untreated. Symptoms of this illness include dizziness, earaches, hearing loss, and ringing in your ear.

Some people may even experience a loss of ability to move parts of your face. The good news is this complication is rare, as long as people receive early treatment for their shingles.

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What Shingles Symptoms Come Next

After about 1 to 5 days, a shingles rash will appear on one side of the body, often in a single characteristic band around one side of the torso or face.

The painful rash will then form itchy or burning blister-like sores filled with a clear fluid. The blisters will scab over in 7 to 10 days. Theyll gradually grow smaller before disappearing.

Shingles rash symptoms commonly last between 2 to 4 weeks.

Whos At Risk For Shingles

Shingles: Signs, Symptoms and Treatment with Dr. Mark Shalauta | San Diego Health

Anyone who has ever had chickenpox can get shingles, but the risk increases with age. People older than age 60 are up to 10 times more likely to get shingles than younger people. Other factors that increase your risk include:

  • Some cancer medicines
  • A weak immune system from illnesses such as cancer or HIV

A quarter of adults will develop shingles at some point, and most are otherwise healthy.

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How Is Shingles Diagnosed

Doctors diagnose most cases of shingles based on physical signs and symptoms. The tipoff is the distinctive, band-like rash that most people develop. It is usually accompanied by itching, tingling, or pain in an area of the body served by nerves prone to infection during a prior bout with chickenpox.

In some cases, shingles cannot be diagnosed by signs and symptoms alone, especially in people with weak immune systems whose rash strays from the typical girdle-like pattern, or in individuals who may be experiencing complications from other conditions. Some people show up at their doctors office having pain or other symptoms before a shingles rash appears. And, in rare instances, a person may have shingles with pain and itching but no rash. In each case, additional testing may be required to pinpoint the exact cause.

A doctor may take a scraping of skin cells for examination under a microscope to determine whether the rash is shingles or something else.

A blood sample may be taken to test for varicella zoster virus DNA. High levels may indicate an active infection.

Blood testing can also detect antibodies to the virus and, depending on the levels, may indicate a first-time case of chickenpox or a previous case that has reactivated, becoming shingles.

Shingles Symptoms Before Rash

Shingles develops in two stages. The first is called the prodromal period.

Shingles is a reactivation of the varicella virus, which is what causes chickenpox. After an initial infection, the virus lays dormant in the body. Once reactivated, which can happen years down the line, shingles results.

Often, the earliest signs this is occurring are similar to what you’d expect at the start of any infection. These symptoms sometimes occur at times when you’re feeling stressed or run down. They are also systemic, meaning they affect the whole body.

You may assume you’re just overtired or coming down with a cold when you actually have shingles.

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What Are The Symptoms And Stages Shingles

Shingles symptoms appear in stages. At first, you may get headaches or feel like you have the flu, but without a fever. You may also be sensitive to light, have trouble thinking clearly or feel dizzy and weak.

A few days or even weeks later, an area of your body or face will feel itchy, tingly or painful. This is where a rash will appear. The rash will eventually turn into a cluster of blisters that are filled with fluid.

The First Symptoms Of Shingles

How to Know If You Have Shingles Blisters

Early symptoms of shingles can appear several days before the more obvious symptoms. However, some people will not have early symptoms before a rash appears.

The most common early symptoms occur on one part of the body or face. This often happens in the abdominal area.

These symptoms many include:

The pain can worsen as shingles develops. The pain can be sharp, stabbing, and intense.

It may also cause hypersensitivity, or an excessive reaction to touch.

There are also other early symptoms of shingles.

Although not every person with shingles will experience them, early symptoms include:

  • general feeling of being unwell

Your doctor can often diagnose shingles based on these symptoms. Your doctor may prescribe medication to speed up recovery.

Medication also reduces the chance of complications, so seeking early intervention is important.

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Can You Catch Shingles

Shingles is not contagious. You cant catch it from someone. But, you can catch chickenpox from someone with shingles. So, if youve never had chickenpox, try to stay away from anyone who has shingles.

If you have shingles, try to stay away from anyone who has not had chickenpox or who might have a weak immune system.

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Other Health Problems Due To Shingles

Some people develop other health problems after the shingles rash clears, which include:

Postherpetic neuralgia : This is the most common. Occurring where you had the rash, PHN can cause constant tingling, burning, and pain. For others, the pain comes and goes.

Whether the pain is constant or intermittent, it can go on for a long time. You can have PHN for months, years, or the rest of your life. There is no way to know how long it will last.

The pain caused by PHN can become so severe that it interferes with your life, making everyday activities painful. A musician may no longer be able to play an instrument. Some people cannot walk comfortably. It may be difficult to bathe or get dressed. You may have trouble sleeping.

How to prevent PHN: If you have shingles, you can greatly reduce your risk of PHN by getting treated for shingles within 3 days of developing the rash.

Get treated for shingles within 3 days of developing the rash

Taking antiviral medication within 3 days of getting the shingles rash can: Reduce your risk of developing PHN Ease symptoms of shingles Clear the shingles rash more quickly

Other health problems that can develop after the shingles rash clears include:

  • Blindness or loss of some eyesight

Although rare, some people die of shingles.

Treatment can prevent these complications.

You can find out if you have a greater risk of developing shingles at, Shingles: Causes.

Images

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Check If You Have Shingles

The first signs of shingles can be:

  • a tingling or painful feeling in an area of skin
  • a headache or feeling generally unwell

A rash will appear a few days later.

Usually you get the shingles rash on your chest and tummy, but it can appear anywhere on your body including on your face, eyes and genitals.

The rash appears as blotches on your skin, on 1 side of your body only. A rash on both the left and right of your body is unlikely to be shingles.

What Are Risk Factors For Shingles

The symptoms of shingles

A weakened immune system might wake up the virus. After youâve had chickenpox, youâre more likely to get shingles if you:

  • Are 50 or older
  • Are under a lot of stress
  • Have cancer, HIV, or another disease that lowers your bodyâs defenses
  • Have had a serious physical injury
  • Take long-term steroids or other medicines that can weaken your immune system

But many people who get shingles donât fit into any of these categories.

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Shingles Vaccine & Prevention

Vaccination is one of the best forms of prevention from shingles. The current shingles vaccine, brand name Shingrix, is an effective way to prevent shingles. One study revealed a 91.3 percent efficacy rate of the Shingrix vaccine against shingles. Shingrix was approved by the FDA in 2017 and is given in two doses, with 2-6 months in between each dose. The CDC recommends adults ages 50 years and older get the vaccine. The Mayo Clinic recommends getting the shingles vaccine if you:

  • Have already had chickenpox, the chickenpox vaccine, or shingles
  • Received the prior shingles vaccine called Zostavax
  • Do not remember having chickenpox at some point in your life

It is essential to speak with your healthcare provider about the best time for you to get vaccinated, along with the benefits and potential side effects of vaccination. You can get the shingles vaccine at your doctorâs office and some pharmacies.

We canât talk about shingles without talking about chickenpox, as the same virus causes them. Therefore, receiving the chickenpox vaccine is also extremely important in the later prevention of shingles. Receiving the chickenpox vaccine does not make you immune to chickenpox, as you may still become infected with chickenpox. However, those vaccinated usually have much milder symptoms than those not vaccinated when infected by chickenpox.

Source: CDC

How Do You Get Shingles

Everyone who has had chickenpox has VZV in their body and is at risk for getting shingles. Right now, there is no way of knowing who will get the disease. But, some things make it more likely:

  • Advanced age. The risk of getting shingles increases as you age. People may have a harder time fighting off infections as they get older. About half of all shingles cases are in adults age 60 or older. The chance of getting shingles becomes much greater by age 70.
  • Trouble fighting infections. Your immune system is the part of your body that responds to infections. Age can affect your immune system. So can an HIV infection, cancer, cancer treatments, too much sun, or organ transplant drugs. Even stress or a cold can weaken your immune system for a short time. These all can put you at risk for shingles.

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Who Should Get The Shingles Vaccine

At this time, Shingrix is recommended for healthy adults who are 50 years of age or older. Individuals should receive the vaccine whether or not they recall having had chickenpox, as data shows that more than 99% of Americans over 40 years of age have had chickenpox, even if they do not remember having had it. Shingrix is also recommended for individuals who have already received the Zostavax vaccine, as Shingrix has demonstrated superior efficacy and longer lasting protection.

Shingrix is not indicated for the prevention of primary varicella infection. The CDC recommends the varicella vaccine for healthy people who do not have evidence of immunity to varicella, including children, adolescents, and adults.

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The Early Stages Of Shingles: Signs And Symptoms

Are these hives or shingles ?? Pl tell really scared : shingles
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  • Summary: chills fatigue · fever · headache malaise or feeling of being unwell nausea sensitivity to light. A persons vision may be affected if the shingles

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  • Summary: The first signs of shingles can be: A rash will appear a few days later. Usually you get the shingles rash on your chest and tummy, but it can appear anywhere

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Can You Still Develop Shingles If Youve Been Vaccinated For Chickenpox

Yes. Despite being vaccinated for chickenpox, you can still get shingles. No vaccine is 100% protective, and the effectiveness of vaccines lessens with time. However, people who get the chickenpox vaccine are significantly less likely to develop shingles later in life compared with people who never received the chickenpox vaccine. One recent 12-year study found that the number of shingles cases was 72% lower in children who had received the chickenpox vaccine compared with those who didnt.

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