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A 36-year-old member asked:

can you get a shingles vaccine without having had chicken pox before?

2 doctor answers2 doctors weighed in
Dr. James Ferguson
Pediatrics 46 years experience
Yes: The zoster vaccine is tested & approved for those 50 and older for prevention of shingles. Those without a known history of chickenpox are likely to have had an unrecognized case in childhood & remain at risk. It is not recommended under 50 as no data were assembled for the fda to review.
Dr. Mark Diamond
Pediatrics 46 years experience
Yes: This vaccine is recommended no matter what the known status is , when age appropriate.

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Similar questions

A 48-year-old member asked:

Dumb q: why do I need shingles vaccine at 50 if I already had chicken pox?

2 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. James Ferguson
Pediatrics 46 years experience
Waning immunity: The shingles represent a return of varicella virus you encountered in childhood. It goes into hibernation in nerve centers along the front of the spine, kept in check by antibodies you developed as a kid. In some, the virus re-emerges as shingles. The shingles shot has a high concentration of the antigen to boost an aging system. Get it & decrease possibly of getting shingles.
MA
A member asked:

Do you recommend the shingles vaccine I am 63 years old and don 't know if I ever had chicken pox.?

2 doctor answers4 doctors weighed in
Dr. Bac Nguyen
Family Medicine 23 years experience
Recommended: It is a good chance that u had chickenpox when u were a youngster. Some had the infection but never had the rash (subclincal diseasr). Zostavax is a live-virus and is effective against shingles, and chickenpox too. The risk of vaccination is small and the benefit can be significant. So, consult your doc for the vaccine, recommended for 60-yrs young and beyond. Good luck.

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Last updated Feb 13, 2019
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