Herpes Zoster

Herpes Zoster

Herpes Zoster

Herpes Zoster is the painful blisters caused by the reactivation of varicella virus that causes chicken pox.It is also known as Shingles.Chichenpox usually occurs in childhood and the virus seeded to the nerve cells in the spinal cord ,usually to that nerves that supply sensation to th skin.The virus remains in the resting phase in these nerve cells for years and any time it may reactivate and grow to produce Herpes Zoster. HZ may occur in childhood but most of the time it presented in adults and especially elderly people.

WHO GETS SHINGLES ?

Anyone who has previously had Chicken Pox may get it any time to any gender at any age.It is more common and severe in the patients with poor immunity. The blisters of herpes may occurs in more than one area and may affect internal organs including gatrointestinal tract , lungs and brain.

CLINICAL PRESENTATION

Pain is thr first feature of this , which may be modrate to severe. Patient feels fever , headache and uncomfortable. The lymph nodes draining the affected area may get swollen ,enlarged and tenderThe blister formation occurs in the painful area after two three days of the onset of pain. In children it may be painless.

It moves as the path of nerve and new lesions continuous to appear for several days. Shingles occosionally causes blisters inside the mouth or ears and may also affect the genetial area.The pain and the other symptoms subside gradually as the eruptions disappears. Inuncomplicated cases the total recovery takes 2-3 weeks in children and adults but in elder patients it may take 4 to 5 weeks.

POST HERPETIC NEURALGIA

This is the term used for persistent pain for more than month after the onset of herpes zoster. It is most common in the patients over 40 and those who have facial involvement during infection. Pain may be continuous and burning with increased sensitivity on the affected areas.

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