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MAIN Arrow to Health Health Arrow to Rashes Rashes Arrow to shingles Shingles

 

shingles rash
Typical "red band" rash
caused by shingles.

 

Shingles, which is also known as herpes zoster virus, is a viral disease which is caused by the same virus that causes chicken pox.

Once a person has had chicken pox, the virus which causes it does not leave the body but rather lies dormant and can become active once again, causing shingles.


Shingles symptoms & appearance

The first symptoms of shingles are pain, numbness, a burning sensation, or pronounced sensitivity on a certain portion of the skin. This is then followed by the rash, which is when symptoms are usually diagnosed as shingles.

The rash often appears as a band that wraps around one side of the back or torso, but can also appear on other parts of the body, including the face and the neck. The rash, however, is always limited to one side of the body. Other symptoms may include blisters, chills, fever, headaches, and itching.

The exact reason for why the chicken pox virus decides to resurface and attack the body again is unclear. Researchers believe it may be related to a generally lowered resistance to infection because it is often older adults who contract shingles.


Shingles treatment

Treating shingles is not entirely necessary as the infection will clear up in a few weeks on its own. However, shingles treatment can be used to speed the healing process up and relieve some of the other symptoms of shingles, which can be unpleasant.

Traditional treatment may include antiviral drugs, pain relievers, and anti-inflammatory drugs.

There are also vaccines available that may help prevent shingles in adults, especially those who are 60 and older. It will not eliminate the risk of infection altogether, but reduce the symptoms should shingles present itself, and will also reduce the chances of complications resulting from a shingles infection.


Shingles complications

 

shingles rash
Involvement with the eye
is one of the more serious
shingles complications.

 

The most dangerous complications arise from a shingles infection which erupts on the face or forehead. The eye may become involved, and herpes-like sores may erupt in the mouth and throat.

Especially when the eye is involved, an ophthalmologist should always be consulted to treat any related eye damage that may occur.


Shingles home remedies

Since a lowered immune response is considered an underlying cause of shingles, supplements of Vitamin E, Vitamin C, b complex and b-12 are usually recommended to lower stress, strengthen the immune system, and hasten healing.

Ecinachea, olive leaf extract, lysine, and other natural flu remedies with anti-viral properties may also help in the 2-3 week long recovery process.


More information about shingles around the Web:



WebMD - Shingles Treatment

 

This information is intended as reference and not as medical advice.
All treatment decisions should be made by medical professionals.

 

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