Shingles: The nine adverse health conditions caused by the infection – what to look for

Shingles: Symptoms and effects of virus

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Shingles is a reaction to the same virus as chickenpox. There are several signs which may indicate the condition with the most common being a rash. The condition could have major health consequences. What are nine serious health outcomes caused by shingles?

Most people will find it painful during the time that they have the rash.

For adults who are otherwise fairly healthy, shingles is not life threatening, though it can be quite uncomfortable.

But the main concern is that for some people, the pain lasts and lasts even after the rash is long healed.

For this reason, shingles is considered a medical emergency.

The most common complication associated with shingles is postherpetic neuralgia (PHN).

PHN is long-term nerve pain that can occur in the area where your shingles rash appeared.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), around 10 to 18 percent of people experience PHN after a shingles outbreak.

The older you are when your shingles appears, the higher your risk for long-term nerve pain.

If the virus is left untreated, your risk for other complications related to shingles.

If your immune system is healthy, your chances of having shingles again in the first several years is lower than it is for people who have never had shingles.

Your chances of a second bout go up over time, but one study suggests within seven years the odds of getting shingles again are about five percent.

Your skin can be painful for weeks after the rash has gone, but it usually gets better over time.

According to Healthline, possible serious complications from shingles include:

  • Vision loss or eye damage if the virus gets into your eyes
  • Hearing loss or hearing difficulty due to Ramsay Hunt Syndrome
  • Partial paralysis in facial muscles
  • Bacterial skin infections as a result of shingles lesions that take a long time to heal
  • Pneumonia
  • Brain inflammation
  • Stroke
  • Meningitis
  • Permanent damage to your nervous system and spine.


The main symptoms of shingles that aren’t shared with chickenpox include:

  • Chills
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle weakness
  • An itchy rash on one side of the body.

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