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shinglesComplication of shingles, which is caused by chickenpox is what post herpetic neuralgia is. While the majority of Shingles cases only lasts a few weeks, the prolonged symptoms of shingles is called post herpetic neuralgia. This condition can affect your skin and nerves. People over the age of 60 are more at risk than others and the risk becomes greater the older one gets. When shingles is primarily on the face rather than other body parts, the risk of post herpetic neuralgia is much higher. Most people find that the symptoms of post herpetic neuralgia decrease over time. The symptoms of post herpetic neuralgia usually stick to the area in which the shingles were located on the body. Signs and symptoms of post herpetic neuralgia are itching and numbness, pain, paralysis or weakness, and sensitivity to touch. Causes of post herpetic neuralgia are chicken pox. Once you have had chicken pox your body is always at risk and has the virus in the body for the rest of your life. Later in life mainly a result of stress, they can arise again, which is called shingles. Post herpetic neuralgia is a complication of shingles. Post herpetic neuralgia takes place when you have shingles and the nerve fibers are damaged. The nerve fibers and the brain lose communication, which in turn is post herpetic neuralgia. The lack of communication causes chronic pain. The herpes zoster vaccine (Zostavax) is known to reduce the risk of shingles nearly 70%. The vaccine is has Food and Drug Administration approved for anyone 50 years of age and older. It is highly recommended for those who are 60 years of age and older, even if they had shingles while younger. Post herpetic neuralgia can take a damaging toll on ones dayto- day life. The person with post herpetic neuralgia may also begin to feel isolated if they remain inside due to the agonizing pain. Things such as these may later lead to depression. Post herpetic neuralgia may also be a leading cause of lack of sleep. While the victim of the pain is experiencing the agonizing feeling of discomfort, sleep may be the first thing to go. It is wise to get the help necessary to treat the pain as soon as it arises in order to break free from the symptoms they may cause such as those just discussed. If you have post herpetic neuralgia and have any questions about how we can help, please feel free to give our friendly scheduling coordinators a call. They are specialized and trained to get you in with one of the board certified pain management physicians that can best be equipped to suit your needs. They can also help with any insurance questions you may have. We are happy to help. It is our goal to help you get to feel like yourself again.

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