Shingles is often touted as an infection of the elderly. We see commercials on TV for the shingles vaccine, and everyone pictured is over the age of 60. Perhaps the pain of shingles can be much more debilitating at that age, but the reality is that anyone who has had chicken pox is susceptible to shingles... no matter how old you are.
What is Shingles?
Shingles is one of the many strains of the herpes virus that can reside in a dormant state in the human body. If you recall, other strains of the herpes virus can cause cold sores and blisters around the face and mouth, genital herpes and chicken pox. A child that has been infected with chicken pox will develop immune cells in response to the virus and it will go into its dormant state within the nervous system. This virus can be reactivated later in life by a number of events:
1. A weakened immune system
Dr. DeSouza shares new research and discoveries along her journey.