“Shingles” is a virus that causes a very painful blistering rash along the course of a single nerve. After we have the chickenpox, the virus migrates up our nerves and lives in our nervous system for the rest of our lives. When we become “run down”, the virus can then re-activate, and it travels down the course of a single nerve, causing this painful condition.
More than 99% of Americans age 40 years and older have had the chickenpox, even if they don’t remember having the disease.
There is a new vaccination out called “Shingrix”. Shingrix is recommended for people who are 50 and over. It comes in two different doses taken two and six months apart.
The vaccination is recommended even for people who had the prior shingles vaccine, as this vaccination is more effective. It is also recommended for those who have had shingles in the past, as you can get shingles more than once.
Unfortunately there is currently a shortage of the vaccination as it is in very high demand.