Shingles is a type of skin infection that results in rashes on certain parts of the body. It is characterized by a single stripe of blisters that may occur on either side of the body. The varicella-zoster virus that causes chickenpox is also responsible for causing shingles. Once you have had chickenpox, the virus remains in a dormant state in the body. If the virus gets reactivated, it might cause shingles.
The symptoms of shingles are:
- You may experience sensations of numbness and burning on the affected area
- The affected area may be sensitive to touch
- Symptoms of red rashes on the body
- Blisters that are filled with fluid
- Bursting of blisters and crusting
- You may experience fever and headaches
- You may have difficulties in vision
The first symptom of shingles is the pain that results from the rash. In some cases, rashes may occur around the eyes.
Shingles is caused by the virus that is responsible for chickenpox. After lying dormant for certain period of time, the virus may get reactivated and travel through the nerve pathways on the skin. This is more likely to happen if your immunity level is somehow affected, which makes it easier for the body to get infected.
The disease is contagious in nature, so it is advised to stay away from people who have shingles. Remember that if you are not immune to chickenpox, then coming in contact with a person who has shingles, might result in you developing chickenpox.
Shingles may result in certain complications in the body such as:
- Vision loss: Shingles, if present around the eyes, may lead to infections in the eye causing vision problems.
- Post herpetic neuralgia: In some cases, the pain that occurs from shingles may continue well after the infection has subsided.
- Neurological complications: Shingles may cause inflammation in various nerves, resulting in neurological disorders such as facial paralysis and balance problems.
- Infections in the skin: Shingles may also cause infections on the skin. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a dermatologist.