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Shingles – When to See a Dermatologist

Hello! My name is Jordan Goad, and I’m a Physician Assistant at Trillium Creek Dermatology.  

Do you think you, or someone you know, has shingles? If you have a painful rash on your body, shingles could be to blame. Although it can resolve on its own within a few weeks, it’s crucial to see your dermatologist as soon as possible if you think you have shingles.

Today I’ll be reviewing more about the rash, along with how we at Trillium Creek Dermatology can help treat shingles.

What is Shingles? (Symptoms, Who is at risk, etc.)

Shingles is a viral infection that leads to a painful rash, localized to one side of the body or face.

What causes shingles?

It is caused by the reactivation of the chicken pox virus, also called varicella zoster virus. Once you have healed from chicken pox, that same virus lays dormant in the nerves of your spinal cord. While anyone who has had chicken pox can get shingles, usually this reactivation occurs later in life. 

What does the rash look and feel like?

When the virus reactivates, it leads to a blistery rash on one side of the body (for example the left face, or right rib cage).  The rash usually begins with a burning or tingling sensation, but can be very painful as well. Sometimes, various sensations in the area of the rash persist even after the rash has resolved. 

How can your dermatologist help you?

Your dermatology provider can diagnose shingles, and help you to effectively treat it. Treatments include pain relief and antiviral medications such as acyclovir or valacyclovir. Although there is no cure for shingles, we can help to reduce your pain, and mitigate the length of time you are affected by the virus. 

Once again, I’m Jordan Goad, PA-C with Trillium Creek Dermatology. Thank you for listening to this week’s blog on What is Shingles and how a dermatologist can help you.

If you would like additional information or a copy of this Podcast, visit TCOhio.com/Blog. To schedule an appointment, call us at 330.725.0569 or schedule online. Thank you!