Slide show: Common skin rashesBy Mayo Clinic staff
Shingles (herpes zoster)
Shingles (herpes zoster) is a condition caused by the chickenpox virus (varicella-zoster virus). After a person has chickenpox, the virus remains dormant, or inactive, in nerve cells. If it's reactivated during adulthood, it causes shingles.
Shingles first appears as a burning or shooting pain, tingling, or itch. A rash with small blisters — similar in appearance to chickenpox — appears later. These blisters break, leaving behind ulcers that dry and form crusts.
Shingles usually resolves within a few weeks without treatment. Antiviral drugs may lessen pain or decrease the likelihood of persistent pain after the rash has healed. Vaccination is available to help prevent recurrence, and although it's not always effective, the vaccine is recommended for most people older than age 60.Next slide Previous slide
- Belsito DV. Dermatitis, including atopic, contact, seborrheic, and stasis. American Academy of Dermatology. http://www.aad.org/education/students/dermatitis.htm. Accessed Oct. 18, 2010.
- Buys LM. Treatment options for atopic dermatitis. American Family Physician. 2007;75:523.
- Pityriasis rosea. American Academy of Dermatology. http://www.aad.org/public/publications/pamphlets/common_pityriasis.html. Accessed Oct. 18, 2010.
- LeBlond RF, et al. The skin and nails. In: LeBlond RF, et al., eds. DeGowin's Diagnostic Examination. 9th ed. New York, N.Y.: McGraw-Hill; 2009. http://www.accessmedicine.com/content.aspx?aID=3659565. Accessed Oct. 18, 2010.
- Usatine RP. Diagnosis and management of contact dermatitis. American Family Physician. 2010;82:249.
- Drug hypersensitivity. The Merck Manuals: The Merck Manual for Healthcare Professionals. http://www.merck.com/mmpe/sec13/ch165/ch165e.html. Accessed Oct. 21, 2010.
- Riedl MA, et al. Adverse drug reactions: Types and treatment options. American Family Physician. 2003;68:1781.
- Miliaria. The Merck Manuals: The Merck Manual for Healthcare Professionals. http://www.merck.com/mmpe/sec10/ch118/ch118e.html?qt=Miliaria&alt=sh. Accessed Oct. 21, 2010.
- Janniger CK, et al. Intertrigo and common secondary skin infections. American Family Physician 2005;72:833.
- Lehman JS, et al. Lichen planus. International Journal of Dermatology. 2009;48:682.
- Lebwohl M. Psoriasis. American Academy of Dermatology. http://www.aad.org/education/students/psoriasis.htm. Accessed Oct. 18, 2010.
- Trevino J, et al. Tinea (dermatophyte) infections. American Academy of Dermatology. http://www.aad.org/education/students/Tineainfect.htm. Accessed Oct. 18, 2010.
- Rosacea. American Academy of Dermatology. http://www.aad.org/public/publications/pamphlets/common_rosacea.html. Accessed Oct. 18, 2010.
- Shingles: Hope through research. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/shingles/detail_shingles.htm. Accessed Oct. 18, 2010.
- Swimmer's itch (cercarial dermatitis). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/dpd/parasites/cercarialdermatitis/factsht_cercarialdermatitis.htm. Accessed Oct. 18, 2010.
- Gibson LE (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Oct. 25, 2010.