Doctor insights on:
Is It Safe To Share A Shower With Someone Who Has Shingles
Depends on immunity: Herpes zoster is the chicken pox virus, so a person with zoster can touch any normal person (not immunocompromised, not on prednisone, not a baby) who has immunity to the virus from a past vaccination or a past case of chicken pox or zoster. Otherwise, the zoster patient can wait until all his rash is fully healed (although he is probably not contagious once his scabs are all dry and healing). ...Read more
Shingles (Herpes Zoster) (Definition)
A painful blistering skin rash caused by the chickenpox virus (varicella zoster). Early treatment with antiviral medication (within 72 hours) lowers the risk of post-herpetic neuralgia, which is lingering skin pain after the rash disappears. ...Read more
I live with my mom and only have one shower. She has shingles and I've never had chicken pox, can I catch it from her by sharing the same shower?
No: You would have to come in contact with the fluid that is in the blister caused by the shingles. ...Read more
How long are shingles contagious? Is it safe for my three year old to go around someone who has shingles in their eyes and have been on antibiotics?
Local care issue: Shingles differs from chickenpox by not having a phase when oral secretions contain viral particles. The contagious material is limited to the wet or dry debris coming from the area involved. As long as the kid has no direct contact with that material she is at no risk. At three she should have had the vaccine already & if so it is unlikely that she could get sick from it anyway. ...Read more
No: Tanning is not safe and is not recommended for anyone. It increases the risk of skin cancer and accelerates facial and body aging. Sunscreen with titanium and zinc can help protect you from uva and uvb rays, but avoiding sun exposure is best. Spray tanning and tanning lotions are a reasonable alternative to achieve a bronzed look, but they may not be safe for pregnant/ lactating women. ...Read more
Yes: Showering when a person has shingles is the same as normal showering. . . Except that one must be gentle and not scratch the skin lesions and scabs with his fingernails. Allowing the scabs to heal and come off the scalp by themselves is the best thing to do. The doctor can prescribe medications to relieve pain and unusual skin sensations, plus help prevent new shingles lesions. ...Read more
You decide: Shingles differs a lot from chickenpox. Only the debris from the weeping sores will carry any contagious particles. It is not in your saliva & does not get airborne in a cough. As long as you can be sure not to contaminate any of the material you make, and cover the sores while visiting, you are fine to share & enjoy the occasion. ...Read more
With precautions: The infant can acquire chickenpox, but only if exposed to debris from the shingles lesions not airborne saliva as with chickenpox. Baby may have some resistance fro mom's antibodies at 3 m, but not enough to prevent disease if heavily exposed. If the shingles site is covered or has dried out completely, it has less chance of transfer. Good hand washing & care & a visit is ok. ...Read more
Prob doesn't matter: Has herpes zoster (shingles) been professionally diagnosed? Don't try to diagnose and treat yourself. Shingles can occur at age 25, but not very common. A lotion or cream might help rash feel better, but won't speed healing. You need antiviral drug by mouth (e.g. valacyclovir) and maybe a steroid to help prevent future nerve pain. Follow your doc's advice, or see a doctor soon if not yet done. ...Read more
I have shingles on my head. I ama server. I cant really cover my head. Is is safe to return to work? Thank you
Shingles: Covering will help but it could still be touched and passed that way. I would not take a chance. You could be serving someone who is not immune to varicella or immune compromised. Be safe! ...Read more
My boyfriend is 26 years old and just found out he has shingles on his face. We are going to mexico in less then a month. Is it safe for him to go?
Yes: It is not contagious. He can go. Use sunscreen especially on his face. ...Read more
Valtrex (valacyclovir) for 7 days: Shingles is when dormant chickenpox virus reactivates and causes painful blisters on limited areas of your skin. It will often appear with pregnancy and other immunocompromised states. Shingles is not dangerous to your unborn baby. The best treatment is oral Valtrex (valacyclovir) for seven days. Valtrex is a prescription drug and is felt to be safe to take in pregnancy. ...Read more
Tuberculin test: I would not recommend receiving any vaccine within 48 to 72 hours after tuberculin testing for fear of interference with the response to the test. ...Read more
Herpes zoster: Should be fine. Dry them carefully and watch for development of increased redness, pain, swelling and warmth over the area which could signify secondary bacterial infection, but the likelihood that this will happen is very low. Good luck and hope you are better soon. ...Read more
Yes: You are at no risk of any infection from exposure to your friend. If you had chickenpox or the vaccine as a kid, you cannot get it from exposure to shingles. The shingles vaccine would also boost your protection. For shingles, only the debris from the blisters contain infectious material, simple avoidance protects even those not already immune. ...Read more
Shingles: Chicken pox is airborne so it's unlikely you will get it from the shower. Shingles is a reactivation of chicken pox in your own body so you wouldn't get that from someone else. ...Read more
If someone already had shingles is it safe to get the zoster vaccine and can it prevent another outbreak?
Can be given age 50: The fda recommends it be offered at age 50 & up. The cdc has not weighed in on the lower age group & still stayed at the 60 year old recommendation for now, partly out of concern for supply. At age 50, there is a better immune response meaning more people can mount a good reaction to the vaccine (69% vs 50%) & become immune to shingles. The shot is very expensive but I do offer it to 50 year old's. ...Read more
I have shingles do I have to put lotion cream on my face after a shower because I don't.I had shingles know for 1 week and 2 days when I take a shower I don't put lotion cream on my face is it necessary to put lotion can I use pond cream or just stay the
Shingles rash: Shingles can be very painful and the rash can be quite blistery and raw. It is therefore advisable to take care of this damaged and inflammed skin. If it's been 9 days already, hopefully things are getting better. The point is to be careful to protect the skin so no further damage occurs and to prevent secondary bacterial infection (if the skin is already broken up and damaged). See MD if in doubt ...Read more
I am 62 and was diagnosed with MS in 1990 is it safe to get the shingles shot? I heard it's a live virus isn't that risky for me?
Complex: The live virus becomes a major issue in those patients who receive immunosuppressive or modulating agents for their ms, as one could fear a viral mutation with a severe infection, but, if you do not take an ms disease modifying agent, you would have same outcomes as those without ms. All in all, a dead virus is preferable, but not always the only choice, as meds can be held for 3-4 wks if vital. ...Read more
Have had increasingly itching, burning skin after shower. I use no dyes, additives. Now it's itching when I get upset! Had shingles 6months ago. Help!
Aquagenic Pruritus: Aquagenic pruritus is a condition in which contact with water of any temperature causes intense itching without any visible skin changes. The episodes can begin anywhere from 1 to 15 minutes (or more) after contact with water and typically lasts 10 to 120 minutes (average: 40 minutes). The cause of aquagenic pruritus is unknown; however, familial cases have been described. Try antihistamines. ...Read more
Define sick: Would defer for a significant febrile illness but not for a minor uri. ...Read more
55 yr. Old spouse, chronic renal insufficiency due to aggressive chemo in 2000 for aml, now recovering from shingles, safe pain medications?
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