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About Shingles Essay

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Shingles, herpes zoster, is a very contagious and painful rash, or blister that appears on the skin. These rashes most commonly appear on the sides of the body in stripes. The stripes are made up of many very painful blisters caused by a certain type of virus. The varicella zoster, most commonly known as the chicken pox virus attacks the nerve roots in that area. The herpes zoster virus is in the herpes family, including HSV, herpes simple virus, which causes cold sores, fever blisters, and genital herpes. (WebMD, 2011) Most people are required to get the chicken pox shot when they are children although some do not. The chicken pox shot helps to keep out the virus by keeping it dormant in the nerves. The varicella zoster virus stays in a…show more content…
Some of the first symptoms of shingles may include intense side pain, itching, tingling, and burning. The symptoms most commonly appear before the rashes or blisters. Then red patches on the skin form. These turn into clusters of blisters in stripes most commonly on the sides of the torso, but may appear on the eyes, face, mouth, and ears. The blisters break soon after this leaving the skin open to ulcers forming. The ulcers form a crust or scab to protect it. The scab will fall off in approximately two to three weeks. Scarring usually does not exist. Additional symptoms include chills, abdominal pain, muscle weakness, headache, joint pain, and difficulty moving some facial muscles. If a woman is exposed to shingles during her pregnancy, and acquires shingles, her pregnancy may be complicated. The mother may get very sick, and the baby may get chicken pox right away or within a few days of birth. If the pregnant woman has shingles within a few days before birth this can be very bad for the baby. The newborn baby might not be able to handle all the stress on the body of the virus attacking the nerves so young. It is not very common for this to happen although it can. If the rash is present, it is advised to go to the doctor within three days. There is no cure for shingles but many medicines can lessen the effects of the illness on the body. Shingles is most easily diagnosed by pains running along the
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