Shingles (Herpes zoster) Causes

Shingles is a reactivation of the virus infection that causes chickenpox. After a person has had chickenpox the virus remains in their body, lying dormant or hidden in part of the nervous system.

For some reason, often many years later, the virus travels back down one of the nerves to the skin, where it causes a rash in the area of skin supplied by that nerve.

It's not clear what triggers reactivation of the chickenpox virus but it may be linked to changes in the immune system. Ensuring your immune system is not weakened may help to prevent this occurring.

  • Stress
  • Fatigue
  • A weakened immune system
  • Cancer
  • Radiation treatments
  • Injury of the skin where the rash occurs

 

 


 
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