Most Common Shingles Symptoms

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They say that some diseases, once we have contracted earlier during childhood will not have the tendency to occur again, for the second time around. However, one exception to that line of thinking is a disease called shingles. Strange and fancy as it may seem, shingles is actually a dreaded complication of chicken pox which occurs in many adults. Here is a quick what-to-know about this certain disease called shingles.

Many of us may have suffered from chicken pox—a disease caused by the varicella zoster virus of VZV. And as we all know, chicken pox presents with the macula-papular rash that may become so itchy! Like any other viral diseases, chicken pox will contain itself and cure itself. However, one thing that we might not know about chicken pox virus is that this certain type of virus may lie dormant in our nerve endings, especially in our spinal nerves. Dormant as they are they may become active at any point in our lives. An estimated 20-25% of people suffer from Shingles.

Shingles is commonly manifested by a rash which is present only in a certain part of the body which we call dermatomes. As mentioned earlier on, shingles virus may lie dormant in the nerve endings. The only area affected by shingles symptoms is the area which that certain nerve supplies or runs through. Another important shingles symptoms that we have to understand is that the rash is unilateral and never crosses the body’s midline—unlike chicken pox rashes which are sporadically scattered all over. Rashes may appear band-like as it only affects a certain portion of the dermatome.

Apart from the rash that may be present, common shingles symptoms that may happen are pain in the area, numbness and tingling sensation and a lot more discomforts. Fever, headache and nausea may also occur as normal shingles symptoms indicating an infection process. Swelling of the lymph nodes which are near the area of affection may also happen.

Like how chicken pox rashes occur, shingles symptoms may also follow the same course. Rashes will subsequently form into fluid-filled blisters. After a few days, these blisters will appear cloudy and start to erupt. After these blisters erupt, crusting will occur and followed by about a month of healing period for these skin rashes and blisters to clear away.

One very important thing among all shingles symptoms is that the pain (neuralgic pain) that a person feels while suffering from shingles may present intermittently even after years of recovering from shingles. This is due to the affection of the nerves in this certain disease. However, this type of pain can be prevented with the proper treatments and interventions like taking oral antiviral medications and the like.

When caring for shingles, especially in terms of the rashes, cleanliness is very important to avoid infection and skin complications of this certain disease. Also, isolating the patient from other people is of utmost importance to prevent the spread of the herpes zoster virus.

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