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  #1  
Old 04-20-2017, 09:21 AM
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Exclamation Shingles

I had chicken pox when I was a kid so I knew there was the possibility of getting shingles.

It sort of sneaked up on me though because at first I wasn't really having the rash you associate with it.

I started having sharp pain just on the left side of my head and face, which well over a week later after the rash started to appear I realized in hindsight was from how shingles affects your nerves.

The only skin appearance at first in the beginning when the pain started was 3 small bumps in a row on the left side of my forehead which I just thought was a skin irritation of some kind.

Then within the past 2 days a small rash started to appear on the left side of my nose and left eye, that's when my wife recognized it as shingles.

I went to the doctors the very next morning (yesterday) as it is dangerous when it gets close to your eye and you need it treated asap.

They prescribed Valacyclovir (an anti-viral used for shingles) and a low dose of amitriptyline (used in low doses to ease nerve pain) which makes you extremely drowsy, it zonked me out much of yesterday afternoon and usually I rarely am able to sleep in the daytime.
(though there were times I was tired enough I wish I could have taken a nap )

I'm sure there are at least a few others on the forum who had had shingles, so how long did yours last before clearing up ?

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Old 04-20-2017, 09:47 AM
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I had a bad case when I was in my mid thirties. I was playing basketball and was in great shape at the time. Even though I was very healthy, I was probably 2 months recovering. I had it on my trunk. I feel bad for you, I know how painful it is. Just as an FYI, you can get it again, so my advise is to get the shot once you recover. Oddly enough, it is unknown why some get it and others do not.

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Old 04-20-2017, 11:05 AM
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AGREE GET THE SHOT , I'm guessing I broke out about 15 yrs ago . Started as a irritation on my shoulder , thought it was a bite or something in my shirt causing it . Then a couple of bumps that turned into many blisters . What made things worse I was working 12 hrs a day , had to change tee shirts at work to keep the area clean. The scars now are barely visible , but for years I looked like a major burn victim. GL ,,,,,,HH
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Old 04-20-2017, 11:17 AM
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Originally Posted by jim mac View post
I had a bad case when I was in my mid thirties. I was playing basketball and was in great shape at the time. Even though I was very healthy, I was probably 2 months recovering. I had it on my trunk. I feel bad for you, I know how painful it is. Just as an FYI, you can get it again, so my advise is to get the shot once you recover. Oddly enough, it is unknown why some get it and others do not.
Thanks for your understanding, wow, you got it in your mid thirties, I guess that shows it can happen even to younger people.

You want to rub the area so bad when it itches but you know you can't.

I was reading info on WebMD and they seemed to think that while a person can get it again, that getting it again is not the norm for most people, I just hope they are right

I'm hoping I caught mine early enough that the recovery period will be less.

Another thing I learned is that while someone can't catch shingles from you, they can catch chicken pox from your shingles IF they never had chicken pox.

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Old 04-20-2017, 11:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Ricki7 View post
AGREE GET THE SHOT , I'm guessing I broke out about 15 yrs ago . Started as a irritation on my shoulder , thought it was a bite or something in my shirt causing it . Then a couple of bumps that turned into many blisters . What made things worse I was working 12 hrs a day , had to change tee shirts at work to keep the area clean. The scars now are barely visible , but for years I looked like a major burn victim. GL ,,,,,,HH
Yep, besides the nerve pain, the initial thing was 3 small bumps in a row that I just thought was some irritation at first.

The unique thing I read is that the pain and rash starts out just on one side, either just the right side or just the left side.

Wow, yours must have really gotten out of hand to look like a burn victim, I wonder if some cases are simply more severe or if the medicine they used back then was not as effective.

Fortunately I am retired so I don't have to worry about being drowsy on the job from the medication.

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Old 04-20-2017, 11:33 AM
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Originally Posted by Ricki7 View post
AGREE GET THE SHOT , I'm guessing I broke out about 15 yrs ago . Started as a irritation on my shoulder , thought it was a bite or something in my shirt causing it . Then a couple of bumps that turned into many blisters . What made things worse I was working 12 hrs a day , had to change tee shirts at work to keep the area clean. The scars now are barely visible , but for years I looked like a major burn victim. GL ,,,,,,HH
Agreed. Get the shingles vaccine if you ever had chicken pox. It's not 100% effective, you may still get shingles, but with the vaccine, it will be a lot milder than you would otherwise get.

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  #7  
Old 04-20-2017, 11:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Rudy View post
Agreed. Get the shingles vaccine if you ever had chicken pox. It's not 100% effective, you may still get shingles, but with the vaccine, it will be a lot milder than you would otherwise get.
Thanks for that alert from the various replies, if anyone has ever had chicken pox in the past it is indeed very possible to get shingles !

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Old 04-20-2017, 12:09 PM
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I had shingles last year on my shoulder and chest at age 54. Left scars. I let it go too long because it mimicked poison ivy, which I thought a bit odd because I'm not allergic (I can almost roll around in the stuff and not get the rash). Lasted well over a month. My wife had shingles soon after, we both had chicken pox as kids.

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Old 04-20-2017, 10:42 PM
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I hope it clears up for you soon.
But, since you brought this up. What type of pain is it when it starts ? Reason I'm asking is , today at work, I was sitting on the floor doing some work, when I went to get up, I got a sharp pain in my left knee, on top of my kneecap. It kind of felt like a bee was under the skin stinging me, or maybe a spur digging into a nerve. Kind of hard to explain. But is your pain anything like this ?

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Old 04-20-2017, 10:47 PM
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I will pray for a speedy recovery. joe

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Old 04-20-2017, 10:48 PM
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Originally Posted by hawgdawg View post
I hope it clears up for you soon.
But, since you brought this up. What type of pain is it when it starts ? Reason I'm asking is , today at work, I was sitting on the floor doing some work, when I went to get up, I got a sharp pain in my left knee, on top of my kneecap. It kind of felt like a bee was under the skin stinging me, or maybe a spur digging into a nerve. Kind of hard to explain. But is your pain anything like this ?
Thanks ! It's difficult to explain exactly, but it's like a sharp pain just under the skin, and often the general area the shingles is affecting can be sensitive and painful to being touched. Watch for any bumps or signs of rash which with shingles starts out only on one side either right or left. It can tend to get itchy at times too.

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Old 04-20-2017, 10:50 PM
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Originally Posted by central joe View post
I will pray for a speedy recovery. joe
Thanks Joe, it is much appreciated !

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Old 04-21-2017, 02:52 AM
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I asked my MD about the shingles vaccine, since they advertise about it on TV, and if I recall correctly, he said that the medical community (maybe the CDC?) recommend waiting until age 60 to get the vaccine. But after reading about how you can get it at much younger age, I think I will see if I can get it now. I don't want to risk getting full-blown shingles if I don't have to. Thanks for this post, and the stories, folks!

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Old 04-21-2017, 05:56 AM
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Originally Posted by hawgdawg View post
I hope it clears up for you soon.
But, since you brought this up. What type of pain is it when it starts ? Reason I'm asking is , today at work, I was sitting on the floor doing some work, when I went to get up, I got a sharp pain in my left knee, on top of my kneecap. It kind of felt like a bee was under the skin stinging me, or maybe a spur digging into a nerve. Kind of hard to explain. But is your pain anything like this ?
Mine started out very similar to a case of poison ivy rash. Light burning and very itchy. Then the rash appears, and a bit unbearable.

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Old 04-21-2017, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by GKL View post
Thanks ! It's difficult to explain exactly, but it's like a sharp pain just under the skin, and often the general area the shingles is affecting can be sensitive and painful to being touched. Watch for any bumps or signs of rash which with shingles starts out only on one side either right or left. It can tend to get itchy at times too.
This sounds similar to the pain Ive got. It's eased up a bit today, but I've been taking it easy so far. I'll keep checking for the bumps and rashes. Wisdom isn't the only thing that comes with old age.

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Old 04-21-2017, 09:59 PM
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Folks should consider vaccine.

My insurance via thru military won't cover shingles vaccine until I reach age 60.
It cost around $300 last time I checked.
Older folks are at higher risk to getting.

My 84 year old mother in law,,had them a couple years ago,,she has recovered.
She is stubborn though,,and don't want the vaccine.

I'm still working on her though,,,maybe she will get it.

Hope you recover fully from your shingles.

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Old 04-21-2017, 11:40 PM
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Originally Posted by amc rulz View post
Mine started out very similar to a case of poison ivy rash. Light burning and very itchy. Then the rash appears, and a bit unbearable.
Mine fortunately isn't a constant itch, but when it does itch you want to scratch it so bad, but it hurts to even touch the area.

Originally Posted by hawgdawg View post
This sounds similar to the pain Ive got. It's eased up a bit today, but I've been taking it easy so far. I'll keep checking for the bumps and rashes. Wisdom isn't the only thing that comes with old age.
Yep, I wish I somehow could have been wise enough to avoid chicken pox when I was a kid

Originally Posted by tnsharpshooter View post
Folks should consider vaccine.

My insurance via thru military won't cover shingles vaccine until I reach age 60.
It cost around $300 last time I checked.
Older folks are at higher risk to getting.

My 84 year old mother in law,,had them a couple years ago,,she has recovered.
She is stubborn though,,and don't want the vaccine.

I'm still working on her though,,,maybe she will get it.

Hope you recover fully from your shingles.
Thanks, I hope since I caught it early enough when the rash part was just starting that the anti-viral med will keep it from getting too much worse while helping to clear up what I do have.

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Old 04-23-2017, 10:24 PM
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GKL I feel for you as I know all too well how shingle hurts.

I had chicken pox along with all the childhood diseases as a youngster. I was about 26 or 27 when I got shingles on my left side. Hurt like the dickens and touching the rash was even worse.

I was Submerged at the time aboard one of Uncle Sam's Polaris Submarines. The Corpsman gave me something and sent me to bed for a few days. Don't know what the medicine was but I think I slept for close to a week.

GET THE SHINGLES SHOT AT THE EARLIEST OPPORTUNITY.
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Old 04-24-2017, 08:31 AM
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Originally Posted by georgeinsc View post
GKL I feel for you as I know all too well how shingle hurts.

I had chicken pox along with all the childhood diseases as a youngster. I was about 26 or 27 when I got shingles on my left side. Hurt like the dickens and touching the rash was even worse.

I was Submerged at the time aboard one of Uncle Sam's Polaris Submarines. The Corpsman gave me something and sent me to bed for a few days. Don't know what the medicine was but I think I slept for close to a week.

GET THE SHINGLES SHOT AT THE EARLIEST OPPORTUNITY.
You getting it in your 20's shows it not something you can only get just when you get older, at least when you were sleeping you didn't have to feel the pain.

Thanks, the anti-viral med seems to have kept it from spreading and getting worse, but I still have the nerve pain and the rash does hurt more when I touch it, now I just have to wait for what I do have to clear up. The med they gave me for nerve pain lessens it but you can still feel it, sometimes worse than others but it makes me so drowsy I usually have to take about a 2 hour nap after it fully kicks in each day so I timed it for later in the morning so I can get some chores done before I get too drowsy.

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Old 04-26-2017, 11:54 AM
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One day last fall, right before we went to the Philippines. I was at Wal Mart picking up some pills. That guy in white asked me if I had the shingles shot ?
You know what mister, I hate shots.. He explained to me about shingles. Than he said that my insurance will cover the shot. So I gave in and let him shoot me. Now that guy sure knew what he was doing with that needle. It did not hurt one bit.
I am glad I did it.
KEN

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