Each year more than one million Americans suffer with shingles, an itchy, blistering rash caused by herpes zoster, the same viral infection that afflicts the nerve roots and causes chickenpox. In fact, those who’ve had the chicken pox, can end up with shingles years later (most likely after the age of 50) due to the fact that the infection can live dormant and become active again due to mounting age, lowered immunity, a treatment (i.e., radiation) or medication that suppress immunity, or an infection (i.e., HIV).
The issue with shingles is that it often mimics other conditions—like poison ivy or scabies—with similar uncomfortable symptoms. However there are a few telling signs that give shingles away, including…
When the shingles virus activates, you will break out in a rash that rears its ugly head in the form of painful, fluid-filled blisters, often on one area of the body only. This is because the virus is affecting the nerve roots—of the chest, back, buttocks, or neck—connected to those exact areas for about 7 to 10 days.
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