Early Shingles Symptoms

Early shingles symptoms might surprise you. Most people associate shingles with a rash that, for some, is extremely painful. However, this rash emerges a few days after early shingles symptoms start to manifest themselves.

What are early shingles symptoms?
Unfortunately, many of these early symptoms are also symptoms of other medical conditions. For example, chills, fever and swollen lymph nodes can be symptoms of a number of illnesses. Another early symptom is a shooting pain on one side of the body. You may also have a headache or an upset stomach.

What can I expect as the condition develops?
As the infection progresses, the notorious rash will appear. This rash resembles the rash of chickenpox, which makes sense since the same virus is involved in both shingles and chickenpox. The rashes will continue to appear for up to five days. The rashes can pop open and crust. Ultimately, scabs will form, and the rash will disappear. Symptoms can also include mild to severe pain, which can last up to five weeks.

What is the treatment for shingles?
The treatment that you receive depends largely on the severity of the attack. Your physician may recommend over-the-counter medications to treat a mild case of shingles or may prescribe antiviral drugs and prescription pain killers for more serious infections.

What are shingles?
Shingles is a viral infection that you can get only if you have had the chickenpox. The virus that causes chickenpox, varicella-zoster, never completely leaves after a chickenpox infection is over. The virus lays dormant until triggered, resulting in shingles. While no one knows exactly what causes the virus to come out of hiding, people who are over 50 years old or have impaired immune systems are often the victims of shingles.

Remember that you can't get shingles if you haven't had chickenpox. In addition, while you can't give another person shingles, you can expose other people to the varicella-zoster virus if they come into contact with your open rashes. This means that other people can develop chickenpox as a result of your shingles.

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