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Herpes Zoster Vaccine

Herpes zoster, commonly known as shingles, a viral disease characterized by a skin rash with blisters, often appears in the shape of snake.

Herpes zoster is caused by a virus as same as varicella. For people who have past history of having varicella, the virus would remain latent in their nerve cell bodies and may reactivate again later in life to develop herpes zoster. Therefore, people who have ever developed varicella would have a chance of getting shingles. The herpes zoster virus will spread through the nerves in spinal cord to skin surfaces to form rash, one side of the back and waist are common areas of infection.

The shingles rash can last up to 30 days, patients will suffer from severe pain. Even after the skin rash faded, the pain will still persist. One fourth of the patients will experience different level of complications, including long-term nerve pain that can last for months, even years. The risk of getting postherpetic neuralgia increases with the age of the patient.

The immune system of young people is strong enough to fight against the virus. However, immune system can weaken with age. And as a result, the chance of developing shingles increases as people get older. Evidence showed that the risk of having herpes zoster increases at the age of 50.

Herpes zoster vaccine can help to suppress the herpes zoster virus in the body, so as to reduce the risk of getting shingles and postherpetic nerve pain. Research revealed that the efficacy of the vaccine is as high as 70%. People aged over 50 years only need one injection to ensure effective protection.

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The above information is provided by professional doctor, and only used for educational purposes. If you have any discomfort, don’t hesitate to consult a doctor.