What are shingles?
Shingles, formally known as Herpes Zoster, is a painful skin rash that involves the “re-awakening” of the chicken pox virus and causes tremendous pain to a localized area of nerves. Adults over the age of 50 and those with a low immunity are more likely to develop shingles. The rash usually affects one side of the body. While it can appear anywhere on the body, it is more likely to appear across the abdomen or up one leg.
What causes shingles?
Shingles is caused by the same virus that causes the chicken pox. Following the chicken pox, this virus, the varicella zoster virus, is re-activated later in life usually because of a compromised immune system, excessive stress, and old age.
What does shingles look like?
The appearance of the following symptoms usually indicates shingles. Initially, you may experience flu-like symptoms with an achy body and general malaise along with a tingling and localized pain in one area of skin. Within a couple of days of the initial symptoms, a small localized rash begins to appear. The rash quickly worsens to a sort of band across one side of the body. The rash turns to small blisters with fluid in them that crust over within a few weeks. Shingles is very painful and affects the nerve endings which cause sharp, pulsing pains.
Is shingles contagious?
It is very important to note that until the rash has crusted over and dried, shingles can be contagious to anyone who comes in contact with the fluid and has had chicken pox or the chicken pox vaccine. Additionally, if someone who has not had either comes into contact with the fluid, he or she will more than likely develop chicken pox. Chicken pox is often very dangerous for adults to contract.
What is the most common treatment for shingles?
The most common treatment for shingles, once it is diagnosed, is an anti-viral medication that can lessen the severity, and, in some cases, the duration of the virus’s active phase. Additionally, there are some ways to relieve the pain that include topical creams, pain relievers, and, for some, cold compresses.
What is the cost of shingles treatment in Boca Raton and West Palm Beach, FL?
The cost of treating shingles varies depending on the extent of the skin condition. Our staff is happy to help you determine if health insurance covers all or part of the costs. Additionally, we can help you with financing options.
What do I do to get started with shingles treatments?
Please call our office to schedule an appointment so that we can conclusively diagnose your skin condition as shingles and then recommend the most effective treatment.
Additional Skin Condition Treatments Available:
- Athlete’s Foot
- Lichen Planus
The physicians and staff at Sanctuary Medical Center in Boca Raton provide personalized care for all our Cosmetic Laser Dermatology patients. We use the most advanced technologies in dermatology to help our patients maintain optimum skin health and restore self-confidence by revitalizing their appearance. To receive more information or schedule a consultation, give us a call at 561.886.0970 to speak with our friendly staff.