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Shingles – Symptoms And Causes

Shingles – Symptoms And Causes Shingles, herpes zoster or zoster is a viral infection that appears as a painful rash. The varicella-zoster virus – the same virus responsible for chickenpox – causes it, and anyone who has contracted chickenpox before can get herpes zoster. This virus stays inactive in the body for many decades after getting chickenpox, typically in the cranial or spinal nerves. When the virus reactivates as zoster, it travels along the nerves to the skin and causes rashes to erupt. While this infection is not life-threatening, it can be excruciating. The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) claims that herpes zoster has been steadily increasing in the United States and that roughly one out of three Americans will develop the infection in their lifetime. Vaccines can significantly minimize the risk of developing herpes zoster while prompt treatment can shorten the infection and mitigate the chances of further complications. Generally, the risk of contracting this infection increases as we age; hence, you should consider getting a vaccine if you are over 50.