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A 21-year-old member asked:

Why did my doctor prescribe an anti-depressant to treat my shingles pain?

2 doctor answers2 doctors weighed in
Dr. James Fox
Psychiatry 16 years experience
Cymbalta (duloxetine)?: Cymbalta (duloxetine), (duloxetine) while an anti-depressant, has an indication to treat nerve pain (though usually in diabetic patients). In order words, it has been studied and has been shown to improve neuropathic (nerve) pain. In this case, it is not being used for its anti-depressant properties. Doses of Cymbalta (duloxetine) are typically higher to treat this than to treat depression, often 60-120mg a day.
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Dr. Sharon Ann Clark
Plastic Surgery 43 years experience
Depression from pain: Pain is a frequent cause of depression, and the pain from shingles can be severe. In addition, it is hard to suddenly have to change from an active lifestyle to being in bed with pain. The herpetic lesions are in a dermatomal distribution which is unpredictable and can leave visible scars. The latter can depress people if visible, such as in a bathing suit or summer clothing for our visual society.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Last updated Sep 29, 2016


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