Thursday, May 23, 2024

What Do Shingles Look Like On Your Chest

When To See A Healthcare Provider

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

Because scabies is so contagious, its important to seek a diagnosis and treatment right away.

Talk to your healthcare provider immediately if you experience scabies symptoms or if someone close to you has been diagnosed with scabies. Your healthcare provider can advise you on how to treat your symptoms and avoid spreading the condition.

What Does Shingles Look Like

My shingles rash looked like someone had put a cigarette out on my eyelid. Frankly, I bet that would be less painful.

You would have thought by now I wouldve caught on but I never really realized that young people can get shingles. It just never crossed my mind. If I had simply done an internet search of my symptoms, it wouldve been obvious what I had.

According to Healthline:

You may begin to notice pink or red blotchy patches on one side of your body. These patches cluster along nerve pathways The rash quickly develops fluid-filled blisters similar to chickenpox. They may be accompanied by itching. New blisters continue to develop for several days. Blisters appear over a localized area and do not spread over your whole body.

Shingles also commonly has a rash that wraps around half of your waist, which people sometimes call the shingles belt or shingles girdle. Lovely. Id never heard of that, but I am also not over 70, and I assume these terms are more popular in that age bracket.

Developing shingles on your face, like I did, is common. Its also common to get them on your neck and torso though there are lots of other possibilities. And no matter where they look truly ugly and disgusting. More importantly, those blisters hurt. Its deep down nerve pain.

Heres what my shingles looked like around my eye :

So I didnt catch all those initial symptoms of shingles, but my doctor did.

Yeah, youve got shingles, my doctor told me.

What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of Chickenpox

Chickenpox often starts without the classic rash, with a fever, headache, sore throat, or stomachache. These symptoms may last for a few days, with the fever in the 101°102°F range.

The red, itchy skin rash usually starts on the belly or back and face. Then it spreads to almost everywhere else on the body, including the scalp, mouth, arms, legs, and genitals.

The rash begins as many small red bumps that look like pimples or insect bites. They appear in waves over 2 to 4 days, then develop into thin-walled blisters filled with fluid. The blister walls break, leaving open sores, which finally crust over to become dry, brown scabs.

All three stages of the chickenpox rash appear on the body at the same time. The rash may spread wider or be more severe in kids who have weak immune systems or skin disorders like eczema.

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Hows Shingles Without A Rash Diagnosed

Shingles without a rash isnt common, but it may be more common than previously thought because it often goes undiagnosed. Shingles without a rash is difficult to diagnose based on your symptoms alone.

Your doctor may test your blood, cerebrospinal fluid, or saliva to identify the presence of VZV antibodies. This will allow them to confirm a diagnosis of shingles without a rash. However, these tests are often inconclusive.

Your medical history may provide clues that suggest you have shingles without a rash. Your doctor may ask if youve had a recent operation or if youre under increased stress.

Once your doctor suspects you have VZV, theyll use antiviral medicines such as acyclovir to treat the shingles. They may also prescribe drugs for the pain.

Other treatment will vary based on the location and severity of symptoms.

Stage : Tingling Burning Skin Sensations

Confirmed shingles going down the right side of the back of my head ...

The first stage of shingles may be marked by a burning sensation, numbness, or itchiness in the area where the shingles rash appears. This is known as the prodromal period.

Common places for the rash to develop include around the waistline, chest, or back, usually on one side of the body. It may also occur on one side of the scalp, face or neck, or on one arm or leg.

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What Are The Symptoms Of Shingles Without A Rash

The symptoms of ZSH are similar to the symptoms of shingles, but without a rash. The symptoms are usually isolated to one side of the body and commonly occur on the face and neck, and in the eyes. Symptoms can also occur in the internal organs. Typical symptoms include:

Shingles isnt contagious. You cant give someone else shingles. If you have shingles and are in contact with someone who hasnt had chickenpox or wasnt vaccinated for chickenpox, you can give that person chickenpox. That person would have to come in direct contact with your shingles rash.

If you have shingles without a rash, you shouldnt be able to pass it to others. Still, its a good idea to avoid contact with people who havent had chickenpox as well as pregnant women until your other symptoms have cleared up.

You can only get shingles if youve had chickenpox in the past. Youre at an increased risk for shingles if you:

  • are over age 50

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Will Shingles Go Away On Its Own

Shingles isnt life-threatening, but it can be incredibly painful and, in some cases, complications can arise. While this rash typically goes away its own, prompt treatment can reduce your pain and help shingles go away faster.

Several antivirals can be used to treat shingles. These drugs can help you heal more quickly and reduce your pain, but they are most effective when started within 72 hours of your rash appearing. This means its important to see your doctor as soon as you suspect shingles, says Dr. Brown. When it comes to the pain associated with shingles, most people are able to manage it using over-the-counter pain relievers. But, pain can be severe for some people. In these cases, your doctor can prescribe stronger pain medications.

Beyond treating your immediate pain and rash, seeing your doctor is also important since serious complications can occur as a result of shingles, such as:

  • Postherpetic neuralgia pain that lasts for months to years after the rash clears, with this pain being debilitating in some cases
  • Skin infection occurs if the open sores of your rash become infected with bacteria, which can require antibiotics and delay healing
  • Vision problems while rare, if your rash develops near your eye, the associated inflammation can damage your retina and, in some cases, result in vision loss

What Is Shingles Common Symptoms

What Are the Causes and Best Treatments for Shingles?

Shingles is an illness caused by a reactivation of the varicella-zoster virus that causes chickenpox. It inflames sensory nerves and can result in severe pain. It causes localized pain, numbness, and itching, followed by the appearance of clustered blisters in a strip pattern on one side of the body. Sometimes the pain can persist for weeks, months, or years after the rash heals . The term “shingles” is derived from the Latin word cingulum, meaning girdle — the idea being that the shingles rash often encircles the side of the body.

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Serious Symptoms That Might Indicate Complications Of Shingles

In some cases, shingles can affect the nerves of the face, eyes, or ears and cause serious symptoms and complications, such as facial paralysis or impaired vision and hearing. Get prompt medical care if you, or someone you are with, have symptoms of shingles, particularly the following symptoms or conditions:

  • painful, widespread rash, a symptom of disseminated shingles
  • weakened immune system caused by a chronic condition or immune-suppressing medications
  • rash near your eyes or involving the tip of the nose

General Measures To Alleviate Shingles Symptoms

Loose-fitting cotton clothes are best to reduce irritating the affected area of skin. Pain may be eased by cooling the affected area with ice cubes , wet dressings, or a cool bath. A non-adherent dressing that covers the rash when it is blistered and raw may help to reduce pain caused by contact with clothing. Simple creams may be helpful if the rash is itchy. Calamine lotion can help to cool the skin and reduce mild itchiness.

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What Is Creeping Eruption

Creeping eruption is a skin infection caused by hookworms. The infection is also called cutaneous larva migrans or sandworm disease.

Creeping eruption causes severe itching, blisters, and a red growing, winding rash. The rash can grow up to 1 to 2 centimeters per day. The infection usually appears on areas of the body that have been exposed to the contaminated ground. These include the feet, legs, buttocks, or back.

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What It Really Feels Like To Have Shingles

41 best r/shingles images on Pholder

Even if you havent had shingles, you probably know that its no fun at all. While the infectionwhich is caused by the varicella zoster virusisnt life-threatening, it can be unbelievably painful and uncomfortable. There are approximately 1 million cases of shingles in the US each year, and the chance of getting shingles in your lifetime is 1 in 3. The CDC advises people age 60 and over to get the shingles vaccine, because the risk of infection increases as you get older, but as youll see below, it can also strike young adults. Read on to learn what its like to have the virus.

It started as an itchy, tingly sensation across my lower right side, and then became somewhat hot and prickly. Having clothing against it was uncomfortable. It eventually went away, and every once in a while I get a bit of a twitch in the area. Bevlyn, 63

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I started noticing a mild rash that was accompanied by a bit of pain near my lower back and hip. The pain was different and less severe than the muscle aches you get after exercise. I went to the doctor quickly, because the pictures that I saw on Google of the most severe cases were pretty frightening and I didnt want it to spread to the rest of my body. My doctor prescribed me the antiviral pill valacyclovir for 2 weeks, which kept it in check. The rash lingered the whole time I was on the meds, but faded 2 days after my last dose. Bill, 49

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What Are The Stages Of Shingles Symptoms

There are no formal, clinical stages of shingles, but symptoms generally fall into three stages. Beginning to end, shingles can last 24 weeks.

Contact your doctor right away if you have symptoms of shingles. Early treatment with antiviral medication may help lessen the severity, speed recovery time, and lower the potential for complications.

Shingles Is A Viral Rash Like Chicken Pox

Shingles rash is caused by the varicella zoster virus, the same virus that causes chicken pox. The shingles virus lies dormant in the nerve fibers of people who have had chicken pox as they age, the virus can reactivate and cause shingles. The CDC reports that about one in five people who have had chicken pox will get this viral rash at some point in their lives. It is most common in those over 60.

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Signs Of Shingles Before The Rash Appears

Before the rash appears, early warning signs of shingles, which may be present, include:

  • Itching, burning pain, numbness, tingling in the place where the rash will develop
  • Flu-like symptoms such as chills, fever, headache, feeling fatigued or overly tired

After the initial skin complaints develop into the shingles rash, the condition typically lasts for two to four weeks. The pain typically worsens as the rash develops and alleviates as it heals.

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How Common Is Shingles

How to treat shingles

Shingles is an infection of a nerve and the area of skin supplied by the nerve. It is caused by a virus called the varicella-zoster virus. It is the same virus that causes chickenpox. Anyone who has had chickenpox in the past may develop shingles. Shingles is sometimes called herpes zoster.

About 1 in 4 people have shingles at some time in their lives. It can occur at any age but it is most common in older adults . After the age of 50, it becomes increasingly more common as you get older. It is uncommon to have shingles more than once but some people do have it more than once.

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How Long Does Shingles Last

Shingles blisters usually scab over in 7-10 days and disappear completely in two to four weeks. In most healthy people, the blisters leave no scars, and the pain and itching go away after a few weeks or months. But people with weakened immune systems may develop shingles blisters that do not heal in a timely manner.

What Types Of Health Care Professionals Treat Shingles

Shingles are most commonly diagnosed and treated by a primary care physician or an emergency medicine physician. For certain individuals who develop complications of shingles, a specialist in ophthalmology, neurology, or infectious disease may also be involved. Select patients with postherpetic neuralgia may require the care of a pain specialist.

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Why Does Shingles Appear Mostly On One Side Or In One Area Of Your Body

The virus travels in specific nerves, so you will often see shingles occur in a band on one side of your body. This band corresponds to the area where the nerve transmits signals. The shingles rash stays somewhat localized to an area. It doesnt spread over your whole body. Your torso is a common area, as is your face.

How Is Postherpetic Neuralgia Treated

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Treatments include lotions or creams and/or other medications not specifically used for pain, such as antidepressants or drugs for epilepsy. Regular pain relievers are not usually effective for this type of pain.

If your pain doesnt lessen, you might try therapies like nerve blocks or steroid injections near the area where the nerves exit the spine. Your provider might suggest an implantable nerve stimulator device for severe, ongoing pain that hasnt responded to other treatments.

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Shingles Or Something Else

Small blisters that appear only on the lips or around the mouth may be cold sores, sometimes called fever blisters. They’re not shingles, but are instead caused by the herpes simplex virus. Itchy blisters that appear after hiking, gardening, or spending time outdoors could be a reaction to poison ivy, oak, or sumac. If you aren’t sure what’s causing your rash, see your healthcare provider.

What Causes Shingles

The varicella zoster virus is the culprit behind both chickenpox and shingles. The first time someone is exposed to the virus, it causes the widespread, itchy sores known as chickenpox. The virus never goes away. Instead, it settles in nerve cells and may reactivate years later, causing shingles. It’s also called herpes zoster, but it’s not related to the virus that causes genital herpes.

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How Shingles Spreads

The varicella-zoster virus can typically spread from a person with shingles to someone who has never had chickenpox. If a person has had chickenpox, they usually have antibodies against the virus in their body.

Shingles causes open, oozing blisters. The varicella-zoster virus can spread through contact with shingles blisters that havent scabbed over yet. If you havent had chickenpox, you can acquire the varicella-zoster virus from exposure to the virus through someone elses open shingles blisters. This could lead to chickenpox.

The virus doesnt spread after the blisters have formed crusty scabs. Once the blisters scab, they can no longer pass on the virus. The virus also doesnt spread when the blisters are well covered.

You cant get shingles through contact with the saliva or nasal secretions of someone who has shingles, except in rare cases. That means you usually cant get shingles if someone who has it coughs or sneezes on you.

National Institute on Aging says that it only reactivates in around one-third of them, so only one in three people with the virus will have shingles. Experts do not know why some people develop it, and others dont.

However, the chance of this happening increases as a person gets older. Around half of all cases occur after the age of 60 years, and the risk increases significantly from 70 onward.

You might also have a higher risk if you:

Even a common cold can affect the immune system and trigger shingles in some people.

What Is The Outlook

Herpes Zoster (Shingles)

If you have a particularly severe case of shingles, it could take months to go away. It can also become a long-term problem for some people. If you have postherpetic neuralgia, you may need to see your doctor more often.

Complications that involve the eye or ear may require ongoing care, especially if you have lingering vision or hearing problems.

Most people have shingles only once, but it can recur. This is more likely to happen if you have a weakened immune system.

If you havent had any major complications, your symptoms should clear up within a matter of weeks with few, if any, lasting effects.

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