How to Treat Shingles

Dr. Sharon Orrange
Dr. Orrange is an Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine in the Division of Geriatric, Hospitalist and General Internal Medicine at the Keck School of Medicine of USC.
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One million Americans get shingles, aka herpes zoster, each year. Early treatment is key. In addition to antiviral medications to shorten the duration of your shingles outbreak, you need to know about the dreaded—and most common—complication of shingles, which will occur in 20% of cases . . . post-herpetic neuralgia.

Shingles is a viral disease caused by the reactivation of varicella zoster virus that had remained quiet in the sensory ganglia since you were first exposed to chickenpox. A vaccine against herpes zoster exists for everyone over 50; it’s called Zostavax. That’s your best way to keep from getting shingles.

I have shingles, now what?

I have pain from my shingles rash, what helps?

My rash is gone, but I still have pain: treatment of post-herpetic neuralgia.

What worked for you?

Dr O.

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