Patient Comments: Shingles - Symptoms

What were your shingles symptoms?

Comment from: ashleew1117, 13-18 Female (Patient) Published: January 18

I'm 17, and just was diagnosed with shingles. My first symptoms were my ear started hurting, like the upper part where my cartilage is. Then I later noticed that where my second piercing is was infected. Then the next day when I woke up it was a little red place on the side of my face that looked like a cluster of small little pimples. So I just put concealer on it and went onto work. Later I felt behind my ear and felt more. The back of my head was itching so I would scratch it and scratch it. I later went home and had my mom check it out and it was just like the ones on the side of my face and behind my ear. The next day, I just laid around the house, and when my mom got home I told her I wanted to go to my doctor and that's when they told me that I had shingles. The ones that is on my skin that isn't in with my hair doesn't hurt, the only ones that hurt is the ones that is in with my hair. They gave me an antibiotic that I have to take 3 times a day for 7 days, I'm hoping they go away soon and the pain stops. I have final exams to finish taking for the rest of the week!

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Comment from: 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: January 12

I first noticed an irritation on the left side of my right breast. I didn't think too much about, I thought I had a hair or something in my bra that had rubbed until a red spot appeared. A day later I noticed more red marks where the bra band sits on my side and wondered if I was using some new product that was causing an allergic reaction. The next day blisters appeared on my breast and there were more on my back and the itching started. I checked online and had an idea that I had shingles. I had to wait over the weekend to see a doctor but she confirmed that I did have a severe case of shingles. She prescribed Valtrex and steroids and after 2 days I think I am seeing some improvement but I still have a lot of itching and burning. Hope the meds work soon.

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Comment from: metzel, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: January 06

Over the past weekend I was real tired and not feeling well, I thought it was just my fibromyalgia flaring up. Monday night I was so itchy on my hip and around that area. I woke up Tuesday with a rash that was painful, and my skin around it burned, which was awful because the edges of my underwear kept rubbing on it. Wednesday I was no better, had a sore throat and the pain was worse, I went to the doctor and as soon as she saw the rash she said, "that's shingles.” The odd thing is I'm only 26. The pain is all on my left side from the waistline down to my knee, even though the rash is no bigger than the palm of my hand. I have to keep it covered with gauze pads just so I can wear clothing without it being extremely irritated. I told my son it feels like someone put a hammer in a fire and wacked me with it.

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Comment from: Sherry, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: December 29

I woke up one day with my eye red and watery. Went to the doctor thinking I had pink eye. He gave me eye drops and told me to stay home. Within two days I was in so much pain that it hurt to talk or have any noise around me. Looked in the mirror and found patches around my eye. I thought it was irritation from my eyes watering and the medications just needed to kick in. Next day I woke up in the worst pain of my life. Having a partial kidney removed, hysterectomy and two children I did not think that was possible. I went to the ER where they immediately said I had shingles. They had me go to another hospital that had an on call eye doctor due to the shingles being near my eye all down my nose and forehead. Sure enough had two shingles in my eye. I could not open my eye for a week. Lots of drainage, pain, and sensitivity to everything around me.

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Comment from: Mum of Tom, 7-12 Male (Caregiver) Published: December 20

My son caught chickenpox at 3 weeks old from his 18-month-old brother. Due to his immune system not being fully developed, I was informed by my general practitioner (GP)that he would probably catch chicken pox again, which he did at 18 months. He was diagnosed with shingles at age 3. The GP with 40 years experience had never seen such a young child with shingles. A thin band - about 3 centimeters of clustered spots - was present around the right side of his waist band. Although his speech was limited, he could not tolerate any clothing or pressure to the affected area. He wore Dungaree's for four weeks. He is now 10 and shingles have reappeared for the second time. Although this time, they are not painful but they are itchy, red, and causing distress. For the past two weeks his appetite has decreased and an overall lack of energy has been noticed from a normally very healthy, active child.

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Comment from: Whitby, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: August 20

For about a week, I had pain in my right shoulder, armpit and the underside of my arm. I thought I pulled it by moving something. Then I broke out in a rash over the same areas, and also my right breast. I had been camping so thought I picked up poison ivy (although I thought it was an odd place and I was covered up). I was taking Tylenol for pain, applying Calamine lotion and the pain was just getting worse. It was like stabbing pain and burning. Finally went to the clinic and diagnosed right away with shingles. I am on antiviral meds and gabapentin.

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Patient Comments

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Shingles - Effective Treatments Question: What kinds of treatments have been effective for your shingles?
Shingles - Experience Question: Please describe your experience with shingles.
Shingles - Pain Question: Please discuss your experience with pain caused by shingles.
Shingles - Vaccine Question: What was your experience with getting the shingles vaccine?

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