A 69-year-old female asked:
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should i get a shingles shot? 69 years old, had chicken pox, exposed to genital herpes apparently the lowest cost shingles shot i can get is $75, which for a senior on a fixed income is a lot of money. however, i had chicken pox as a child; i've never

3 doctor answers
Dr. Haritha Vankireddy
19 years experience Family Medicine
I : I would recommend that it is beneficial to get shingles vaccine for you. The risk of you getting shingles is as average as any person of your age group. Genital herpes does not have any role in incidence of shingles. But the after effects of shingles (postherpetic neuralgia), meaning pain and burning sensation in the area where the person had the rash from shingles even after the rash disappears in some individuals is very uncomfortable and this seems to increase with age. The benefit from vaccine decreases as you delay the vaccine after 70 yrs. The vaccine has shown that it decreases the intensity of shingles episode and incidence and intensity of post herpetic neuralgia. If you sum the cost of the doctor visits and medications needed to treat post herpetic neuralgia, the cost of shingles vaccine is definitely lower. I hope this is helpful. I wish you the very best.
Answered on Sep 26, 2018
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4 thanks
Dr. Harry Aronowitz
44 years experience Orthodontics
Get : Get the shot! i got shingles myself and even though i had a mild case i wish i had taken the shot to avoid the pain that i went through.
Answered on Oct 3, 2016
Dr. Alvin Lin
Dr. Alvin Lin answered
30 years experience Geriatrics
First, : First, it's nice to hear from someone that sexual activity doesn't have to end at any specific age. With that said, it's still important to protect oneself regardless by using barrier methods, typically condoms. Second, genital herpes are due to herpes simplex virus, while chickenpox & shingles are due to herpes zoster. Therefore, getting a vaccination against the latter will not protect you from the former. However, zostavax, the only shingles vaccine currently available, should decrease your risk for a shingles outbreak by at least 45%. And if you don't get shingles, then you're really unlikely to suffer its dreaded painful complication, post-herpetic neuralgia. Your quoted cost sounds pretty good to me (i don't have any (financial) relationship to any pharmaceutical or vaccine manufacturer) but you might also want to check in w/your local health department to see if they're running a special, so to speak. Bottom line, i recommend the shingles vaccine to all my patients 50 years and older. Good luck!
Answered on May 16, 2018

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