How Can I Take Care Of Myself
- Take a pain-relief medicine such as acetaminophen. Take other medicine as prescribed by your healthcare provider.
- Put cool, moist washcloths on the rash.
- Rest in bed during the early stages if you have fever and other symptoms.
- Try not to let clothing or bed linens rub against the rash and irritate it.
- You develop worsening pain or fever.
- You develop a severe headache, stiff neck, hearing loss, or changes in your ability to think.
- The blisters show signs of bacterial infection, such as increasing pain or redness, or milky yellow drainage from the blister sites.
- The blisters are close to the eyes or you have pain in your eyes or trouble seeing.
- You have trouble walking.
Is There A Shingles Vaccination
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 anyone aged between 70 and 79 years who has 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.
Are Shingle On Scalp Contagious
Shingle on scalp or on other parts of the body is not contagious. What that means is that you cannot give it to someone else. However, the virus that causes chicken pox is highly contagious. The virus can be spread through physical contact with people who have not had chickenpox before or who were not vaccinated against the virus.
Remember, it is the virus that causes chicken that activates to cause shingles on scalp. Once infected with the varicella virus, your immune system releases antibodies that protect your body from future infections of the virus.
To reduce the risk of transmitting the virus from an infected person to those not infected, you need to reduce physical contact until the symptoms clear. Shingles without rash is however not contagious, It is however advised to reduce close physical contact with those not infected with the virus, especially pregnant women and those with weak or compromised immune system.
Shingles Linked To Stroke Heart Attack
Not only do shingles flare-ups hurt, research says they can increase your short-term risk of heart attack and stroke following the virus outbreak.
Shingles was found to raise the risk of stroke by 35% and the risk of heart attack by nearly 60%, according to a study of more than half a million people. The risk of stroke was highest in those under age 40.
Its been known for a while now that zoster causes stroke, said Dr. Gwen Wigand-Bolling, an internist at . The inflammation it creates causes heart attack and stroke, and shingles causes increased blood clotting in the arteries, she added.
The risks of both stroke and heart attack were highest in the first year after the onset of shingles and decreases with time, researchers said.
How Does It Occur
If you have had chickenpox, you are at risk for later developing shingles. After you recover from chickenpox, the chickenpox virus stays in your body. It moves to the roots of your nerve cells and becomes inactive . Later, if the virus becomes active again, shingles is the name given to the symptoms it causes.
What exactly causes the virus to become active is not known. A weakened immune system seems to allow reactivation of the virus. This may occur with normal aging, immune-suppressing medicines, or another illness, or after major surgery. It can also happen as a complication of cancer or AIDS or treatment of these illnesses. Chronic use of steroid drugs may trigger shingles. The virus may also become active again after the skin is injured or sunburned. Emotional stress seems to be a common trigger as well.
You Cannot Get Shingles From Someone With Chickenpox
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.
What Are The Symptoms
The first sign of shingles is often burning, sharp pain, tingling, or numbness in your skin on one side of your body or face. The most common site is the back or upper abdomen. You may have severe itching or aching. You also may feel tired and ill with fever, chills, headache, and upset stomach or belly pain.
One to 14 days after you start feeling pain, you will notice a rash of small blisters on reddened skin. Within a few days after they appear, the blisters will turn yellow, then dry and crust over. Over the next 2 weeks the crusts drop off, and the skin continues to heal over the next several days to weeks.
Because shingles usually follows nerve paths, the blisters are usually found in a line, often extending from the back or side around to the belly. The blisters are almost always on just one side of the body. Shingles usually doesn’t cross the midline of the body. The rash also may appear on one side of your face or scalp. The painful rash may be in the area of your ear or eye. When shingles occurs on the head or scalp, symptoms can include headaches and weakness of one side of the face, which causes that side of the face to look droopy. The symptoms usually go away eventually, but it may take many months.
In some cases the pain can last for weeks, months, or years, long after the rash heals. This is called postherpetic neuralgia.
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How Is Shingles Diagnosed
Your healthcare provider will do a complete physical exam and ask about your medical history, specifically about whether you have ever had chickenpox.
Your healthcare provider will likely know right away that it is shingles based on the unique rash. The rash usually appears one area on one side of the body or face. It appears as red spots, small fluid- or pus-filled vesicles, or scabs.
The healthcare provider may also take skin scrapings for testing.
Preventing The Virus Spreading
If you have the shingles rash, do not share towels or flannels, go swimming, or play contact sports. This will help prevent the virus being passed on to someone who has not had chickenpox.
You should also avoid work or school if your rash is weeping and cannot be covered.
Chickenpox can be particularly dangerous for certain groups of people. If you have shingles, avoid:
- women who are pregnant and have not had chickenpox before as they could catch it from you, which may harm their unborn baby
- people who have a weak immune system, such as someone with HIV or AIDS
- babies less than one month old, unless it is your own baby, in which case your baby should have antibodies to protect them from the virus
Once your blisters have dried and scabbed over, you are no longer contagious and will not need to avoid anyone.
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What If I Have Shingles And A Poor Immune System
If you have a poor immune system and develop shingles then see your doctor straightaway. You will normally be given antiviral medication whatever your age and will be monitored for complications. People with a poor immune system include:
- People taking high-dose steroids. per day for more than one week in the previous three months. Or, children who have taken steroids within the previous three months, equivalent to prednisolone 2 mg/kg per day for at least one week, or 1 mg/kg per day for one month.)
- People on lower doses of steroids in combination with other immunosuppressant medicines.
- People taking anti-arthritis medications which can affect the bone marrow.
- People being treated with chemotherapy or generalised radiotherapy, or who have had these treatments within the previous six months.
- People who have had an organ transplant and are on immunosuppressive treatment.
- People who have had a bone marrow transplant and who are still immunosuppressed.
- People with an impaired immune system.
- People who are immunosuppressed with HIV infection.
Can I Go To Work With Shingles
If your employer doesnt take kindly to sick days, you might be wondering whether you can still go to work. With shingles, its not always advisable when it comes to shingles on the scalp.
If someone has shingles in a small, easily coverable area, you might be able to go to work. For example, a small patch of blisters on the torso would be easy to cover with a bandage. If the blisters are completely covered, the virus wont be able to transfer to anyone else.
However, shingles on the scalp arent as easy to cover. The rash is usually underneath your hair, so it might be difficult to affix a bandage. If you arent able to cover up your rash completely, you shouldnt go to work in case you spread the virus.
This is vital if you work with vulnerable people. For example, it can be dangerous to expose pregnant women to the varicella-zoster virus. Although its rare, exposure to the varicella zoster virus can make the unborn baby quite sick. You should also avoid interacting with anyone who has a compromised immune system. For example cancer patients, the elderly, and sick people.
Another thing to consider is the pain. Shingles is usually painful. For this reason, it can be quite hard to go to work and concentrate when youre suffering so much. Doctors often advise rest when you have shingles. Dont push yourself too much. Otherwise, the illness might last longer.
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Shingles On Scalp: Symptoms Pictures Images No Rash & Treatment
What are shingles on scalp? Shingles is an infection caused by the same virus that causes chicken pox. That means one cannot develop shingles if they have not had a previous infection of chickenpox. The primary symptom of Shingles is a rash. It is however not uncommon for some people to develop the shingles with no rash. Both this forms of shingles are not contagious. Here are some of the symptoms, pictures and treatment option for shingles not only on scalp but also on other parts of the body.
Shingles are also called herpes zoster. This infection is caused by the same virus that causes chicken pox. It is common in older people above 60 years. It occurs when the virus that caused chickenpox reactivates. Once infected with chicken pox, your body defense system becomes immune to the virus. After the chicken pox clears, the virus remains dormant in the root of the nerve cells.
The virus will then reactivate to cause shingles. The actual cause for the reactivation of the virus is not known. The risk of the virus reactivating, however, increases with increase in age, the weakening of the immune system, illness or some using some medicine. Other cause believed to cause the reactivation of the virus is said to be emotional stress.
How Long Does Shingles On The Face Last
According to the National Institute on Aging , many cases of shingles take 35 weeks to heal.
A rash may develop around 48 hours after experiencing initial skin sensations or a general feeling of being ill . Rash and blisters then appear and can take around 2-4 weeks to clear.
If you experience a chronic infection, you may have recurrent pain and other symptoms, such as paresthesias, lasting more than 4 weeks. This could last months to years.
However, the outlook and recovery time will vary according to the person and their condition.
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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.
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.
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What Are Some Common Treatments For Shingles
The CDC recommends that adults 50 years or older receive two doses of the shingles vaccine. Additionally, several antiviral medicines like acyclovir, valacyclovir, and famciclovir are available to treat shingles and shorten the length and severity of the illness. These medicines are most effective when taken immediately after the rash appears.
Managing Shingles On The Scalp
Pay special attention to prevent permanent hair loss.
Herpes zoster, also commonly known as shingles, is a viral infection that occurs when the dormant varicella-zoster virus reactivates in the body after causing an earlier case of chickenpox. Once a person recovers from chickenpox, VZV travels deep into nerve tissues and remains dormant for decades. When it reawakens, it travels back up the same nerve to the skin where it reemerges as shingles.
Any individual that has had chickenpox can develop shingles unless they have been vaccinated against it, which greatly decreases their risk. Approximately 60% of all shingles cases occur in people over the age of 60.
One of the most common symptoms of shingles is a painful and blistering raised rash that erupts most often along one side of the torso, waist, chest, neck, or back. Other sites include around an eye, ear, or scalp.
Shingles on the scalp is particularly tricky to treat because the skin there is very sensitive. Simple pressure from washing or brushing the hair can result in broken and bleeding blisters.
Besides pain, shingles on the scalp can cause headaches and weakness on one side of the face that makes it appear to droop. It can also cause hair loss from combing or scratching, or even permanent baldness from cicatricial alopecia, which destroys the hair follicles that generate hair growth and replaces them with scar tissue.
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Are Shingles On Scalp Contagious
Are shingles contagious? This condition is caused by a virus, which is spread through direct contact with fluid from the rash blisters caused by shingles. A person with active shingles can spread the virus when the rash is in the blister-phase. Otherwise, the virus is not contagious before the blister appears.
For you to know how long shingles on scalp is contagious, you should understand the symptoms for each stage of this condition. The skin lesions develop 2 to 3 days after the onset of the attack. The rash develops typically in one line which later forms small to large blisters.
Who’s At Risk For Shingles
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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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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