Older adults and others with weakened immune systems are particularly vulnerable and the risk of getting shingles increases with age (4). Unlike chicken pox, shingles can strike more than once and as Dr. Mark Loeb – a professor in the Department of Pathology and Molecular Medicine at McMaster University – points out, another complication can be even more worrisome. “Postherpetic neuralgia” can affect up to one in three people with shingles and usually occurs up to a month after the rash appears. As Dr. Loeb describes, it can range “from mild to really excruciating pain after the rash has resolved and can persist for weeks, months, even several years. This pain can disrupt sleep, work or activities of daily living.
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