My mom has shingles - question

Discussion in 'Community Board' started by amg35, Oct 4, 2012.

  1. amg35

    amg35 DIS Veteran

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    It's on her arm, she started medicine (went to doc on Wednesday) and she said it's a mild case.

    She's 73 (healthy-knock wood), anything I should be looking out for? (for her, not me)

    I think she must have gotten from my sister who has Lupus and had shingles a couple months ago?

    Thanks!
     
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  3. lizabu

    lizabu Disney Maniac

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    I don't think so. My sister had shingles and as I understand it you had to have had chicken pox at some point in the past. If you are around someone with chicken pox you won't usually catch chicken pox for a second time but you can develop shingles. It's my understanding that the contagious period of chicken pox at least is before the spots ever show up. If your sister had it 2 months ago I wouldn't blame her. I think it was too long ago. I feel bad for your Mom. I understand they are extremely painful. I hope she feels better soon.
     
  4. amg35

    amg35 DIS Veteran

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    Thanks! I don't blame my sister, just thought maybe it was a possible reason!:)
     
  5. cristit14

    cristit14 <font color=blue> An older <font color=red>I am Do

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    I just got over shingles a few weeks ago. What the doctor told me was you can't give shingles to someone. However, when I was contagious I could have given someone the chicken pox.
     
  6. Coconut36

    Coconut36 DIS Veteran

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    Shingles is not contagious..it is not airborne and you can't catch shingles from someone else who has it (although someone who has not had chicken pox can contract chicken pox if they come in contact with shingles lesions).
     
  7. amg35

    amg35 DIS Veteran

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    Okay yes, my sister didn't give her shingles!:rotfl: I only asked because my sister said it was contagious - I was just wondering how my mom got it. (wasn't really the point of my post originally, sorry)

    I guess I was asking, I shouldn't worry about any side effects from it for her?
     
  8. Janepod

    Janepod <font color=royalblue>The new dinning plan is out.

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    IIRC keep her away from anyone pregnant. My husband had shingles while I was pregnant and all the doctors flipped out (though I did have the chicken pox as a kid, so I don't recall what the big deal was exactly.) Hope she recovers soon!
     
  9. livie1205

    livie1205 DIS Veteran

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    You CAN catch chickin pocks from shingles if you have not had it, it is not airborne but it is in saliva and from direct contact with the shingles.my dad had a severe case a few months ago and when he was put in the hospital they thought it was from complications but he had ecoli sepsis.shingles can be very very painful . Hope she is doing better soon! They even put my dad in isolation in the hospital until the rash had healed.
     
  10. dakcp2001

    dakcp2001 <font color=darkorchid>Am I wrong to want a cashie

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    Shingles IS contagious in the blister phase until it crusts over. It is very dangerous for pregnant women to be anywhere near someone with shingles. It is very dangerous to the fetus.
     
  11. MnMomtoboys

    MnMomtoboys DIS Veteran

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    I found out I was pregnant after I was dx with shingles. Its a big deal. I didn't get all the reasons why but I did know that it can cause miscarriages.



    OP just have your Mom keep her arm covered by wearing long shirts. Someone has to touch them to be exposed. The spots can last a long time. I think mine lasted almost a year. Not all of them but a couple of spots did. Funny thing was in one area the spots were in the shape of a smiley face.
     
  12. Debbie7452

    Debbie7452 DIS Veteran

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    You get shingles when the chicken pox virus already in your body from having chicken pox long ago reactivates. Usually your body can fight off an old virus with antibodies, but people with reduced immune systems, for whatever reason, are vulnerable. But the shingles sufferer is capable of passing the virus to another to give them chicken pox if they are not immune.
     
  13. tefrench

    tefrench DIS Addict

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    My dh has them now!

    For him, it is the pain that bothered him - he said it felt like road rash - and he was wiped out. He was told to stay home from home until the blisters had started scabbing over, and he was so tired, he didn't complain about missing work.
    Even wearing a shirt hurts.

    He seems to be recovering, but it's kind of a slow process.

    Good luck with your mom!
     
  14. badblackpug

    badblackpug <font color=blue>If you knew her you would be shoc

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    There is a shingles vaccine. It is called zostavax. Most minute clinics carry it.
     
  15. tefrench

    tefrench DIS Addict

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    There is a shingles vaccine, but most insurance won't pay for it until you are 70 (way too late for dh!) The cost out of pocket would be in the hundreds of dollars.

    Dh's doctor told him, once you have developed shingles, the shot won't prevent any recurrance.
     
  16. erincon23

    erincon23 <font color=blue>Everyone must have gotten a life

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    DS16 had shingles earlier this year -- you can get it even if you had the chicken pox vaccine! It's more likely to occur when your immune system is compromised or you're under stress.

    And I just had to research the cost of the shingles vaccine for my boss -- Costco and Sam's have it for about $180. If you live in the Chicago area, Dominick's charges $214, but they have a free discount program that brings it down to $170 something. If you're under 60, your doctor can give you a letter recommending it. Even if you've had shingles, it's worth getting the vaccine because it can reduce the severity of outbreaks.
     
  17. design_mom

    design_mom <font color=royalblue>I am probably more like my d

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    I have had shingles twice (lucky me).

    I'm not sure if this is a good thing to mention to your mom or not, but many patients can still have pain at the site of their rash, even months after the rash is gone. It's called "Postherpetic Neuralgia" and is caused by damage to the nerve that shingles can cause. I've read that about 40% of people get it and it can range from mild to severe. I had it for about a year after my first bout, but I think mine was a pretty mild case. For me, it wasn't horrible, horrible pain, but it was almost like it would "crackle" with pain then settle down. For some people it can be pretty bad though. So, if she continues to complain of pain even after the blisters heal, that could be what it is -- and her doctor can hopefully offer her some pain management techniques for it.

    http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/postherpetic-neuralgia/DS00277
     
  18. MIGrandma

    MIGrandma Lives in the middle-of-the-mitten.

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    I'm 55 and plan on getting it next month. I'm going to call my insurance co. to see if it would be covered on my plan, and if it is then ask where I need to get it as my doctor said sometimes insurance companies will pay for it only if you get it done at the doctor's office, and some only pay if you have it done at a pharmacy like Rite-Aid, Walgreens, etc.

    I've done some research and didn't find it to be "hundreds of dollars" really, just about $200. Yes, it's still kind of expensive but I really don't care. If it is available to prevent painful shingles then I still want to get it. I think DH should get it too but he doesn't seem too concerned about it.

    My Mom is 75 and I think she should get it too, but she hasn't done it yet.

    I just hate to see someone suffer from something like that, when they wouldn't have to if they'd just get the vaccine.
     
  19. tzolkin

    tzolkin DIS Veteran

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    I had shingles when I was in middle school.

    My parents took me to the hospital because I had a fever, vomiting, headache, and I could not turn my head. The doctors thought I had meningitis, but when they were getting me ready for testing one of the nurses noticed that I was starting to develop a rash.

    It turned into a six inch wide band that went from belly button to spine, so it was quite uncomfortable after the blisters started to form because any bending, sitting, leaning back, etc would irritate the area.

    It was not horribly painful, but I did have scarring for many months. Eventually it did fade.
     
  20. Jaime4004

    Jaime4004 DIS Veteran

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    Not really anything to look out for. Generally it's just about pain management. As PP mentioned, some people get post herpatic neuraglia (pain in same area for months, after the rash has disappeared.) Otherwise, a secondary bacterial infection but I don't think that's very common either!
     
  21. Coconut36

    Coconut36 DIS Veteran

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    Shingles is only contagious to someone who has not had chicken pox (or the vaccine). It can cause them to contract chicken pox. You can not give shingles to someone.

    OP..shingles is simply the reactivation of the CP virus in the body..there is a vaccine to help prevent shingles from occurring and it most commonly happens in "older" folks..sometimes it is an immune response, can happen during extremely high stress times..etc but it's just something that happens.
     

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