Herpes zoster or Shingles is a disorder where a crop of blisters produced by the varicella zoster virus form a band across one side of the chest, abdomen or face.
The same virus that causes chicken pox causes shingles.
Basically it is an extreme form of chickenpox disease.
The name of virus that causes Shingles is Herpes Zoster Virus.
The chickenpox virus stays in a dormant state in certain nerve cells of the body from months to many years, and then reactivates producing herpes zoster.
This infection is because of a temporary reduction in the body's resistance permitting the virus to start multiplying and to travel along nerve fibers towards the skin.
Herpes zoster can occur to anyone who has had chickenpox.
If a person has had chickenpox, he or she could get Herpes zoster at any time.
There is no way to find out if or when the person will get it or how severe the case could be.
Herpes zoster is very dangerous for the health of newborn in case of pregnancy.
The rash is not the first definite sign of Herpes zoster.
The person may sense an itching, tingling, burning, or pain in a specific area on one side of the body or face.
The first symptom is a burning pain or tingling and excess sensitivity in one area of the skin.
This may exist for one to three days before a red rash occurs.
Herpes zoster may or may not have blisters formation.
The blisters in case of Herpes zoster increase in a regular pattern.
The group of blisters then forms on a red base which looks like chicken pox lesions.
The blisters normally last for two to three weeks, during which time they collect pus and then crust over and begin to go away.
Herpes zoster can be a painful, blister forming rash.
The Herpes zoster rash normally affects only one of the nerves of the body.
The painful rash most often extends along one side of the body in a band.
This band is called a dermatome which is the area supplied by one of the nerves from the spinal cord connects with the skin.
The rash can last up to 30 days.
For those people who feel the initial tingle, burning, itch or pain, the rash normally occurs on the skin in the same area.
Some people may have complications that persist after the rash has healed, like permanent scarring or changes to the color of the skin, or nerve pain that may last for months or even years.
In very rare cases, loss of hearing or vision impairment can happen when Herpes zoster affects the ear or eye respectively.
The Herpes zoster rash can cause severe, stabbing pain.
Some people may form long-term nerve pain, meaning that pain can last for months or even years after the rashes have recovered.
This is called post-herpetic neuralgia, or PHN.
The diagnostic findings are particularly, the typical site and appearance of the skin eruption in link with localized pain.
Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing of vesicular fluid, a corneal lesion, or blood
Tzanck smear of vesicular fluid (lower sensitivity and specificity than PCR)
Detection of VZV DNA in plasma can confirm the early recognition of VZV infection in immunocompromised hosts.
The most frequent treatments for herpes zoster are:
1. Antiviral medicines, such as acyclovir, famciclovir, or valacyclovir, to reduce the pain and the duration of herpes zoster.
2. Over-the-counter pain medicines, such as acetaminophen, aspirin, or ibuprofen, to help reduce pain during an attack of herpes zoster.
3. Topical antibiotics applied directly to the skin to stop infection of the blisters.
4. For severe cases of herpes zoster, some doctors may have their patients use oral corticosteroids.
5. Antidepressant in case of depression and pain
The pain can be also relieved with cold and rest
TABLE OF CONTENT
Chapter 1 Herpes Zoster
Chapter 2 Causes
Chapter 3 Symptoms
Chapter 4 Diagnosis
Chapter 5 Treatment
Chapter 6 Prognosis
Chapter 7 Neuropathic Pain
Chapter 8 Trigeminal neuralgia
|File size:||163 KB|
About the Author
Medical doctor since 1972. Started Kee Clinic in 1974 at 15 Holland Dr #03-102, relocated to 36 Holland Dr #01-10 in 2009. Did my M.Sc (Health Management ) in 1991 and Ph.D (Healthcare Administration) in 1993. Dr Kenneth Kee is still working as a family doctor at the age of 65. However he has reduced his consultation hours to 3 hours in the morning and 2 hours in the afternoon. He first started writing free blogs on medical conditions seen in the clinic in 2007 on http://kennethkee.blogspot.com. His purpose in writing these simple guides was for the health education of his patients which is also his dissertation for his Ph.D (Healthcare Administration). He then wrote an autobiolographical account of his journey as a medical student to family doctor on his other blog afamilydoctorstale.blogspot.com. This autobiolographical account “A Family Doctor’s Tale” was combined with his early “A Simple Guide to Medical Conditions” into a new Wordpress Blog “A Family Doctor’s Tale” on http://ken-med.com. From which many free articles from the blog was taken and put together into 550 amazon kindle books and some into Smashwords.com eBooks. He apologized for typos and spelling mistakes in his earlier books. He will endeavor to improve the writing in futures. Some people have complained that the simple guides are too simple. For their information they are made simple in order to educate the patients. The later books go into more details of medical conditions. The first chapter of all my ebooks is always taken from my blog A Simple Guide to Medical Conditions which was started in 2007 as a simple educational help to my patients on my first blog http://kennethkee.blogspot.com. The medical condition was described simply and direct to the point. Because the simple guide as taken from the blog was described as too simple, I have increased the other chapters to include more detailed description of the illness, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment. As a result there are the complaints by some readers of constant repetitions of the same contents but in detail and fairly up to date. He has published 550 eBooks on various subjects on health, 1 autobiography of his medical journey, another on the autobiography of a Cancer survivor, 2 children stories and one how to study for his nephew and grand-daughter. The purpose of these simple guides is to educate patient on health conditions and not meant as textbooks. He does not do any night duty since 2000 ever since Dr Tan had his second stroke. His clinic is now relocated to the Bouna Vista Community Centre. The 2 units of his original clinic are being demolished to make way for a new Shopping Mall. He is now doing some blogging and internet surfing (bulletin boards since the 1980's) starting with the Apple computer and going to PC. All the PC is upgraded by himself from XT to the present Pentium duo core. The present Intel i7 CPU is out of reach at the moment because the CPU is still expensive. He is also into DIY changing his own toilet cistern and other electric appliance. His hunger for knowledge has not abated and he is a lifelong learner. The children have all grown up and there are 2 grandchildren who are even more technically advanced than the grandfather where mobile phones are concerned. This book is taken from some of the many articles in his blog (now with 740 posts) A Family Doctor’s Tale. Dr Kee is the author of: "A Family Doctor's Tale" "Life Lessons Learned From The Study And Practice Of Medicine" "Case Notes From A Family Doctor"