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What is Shingles and What are the Symptoms?

Shingles, commonly known as herpes zoster, is a viral infection that occurs on the human body as a painful rash and blisters. This infection is a disease caused by the chickenpox virus and is at higher risk, especially in adults and people with compromised immune systems. Shingles usually spread along the nerves, causing a painful rash on one side of the body. In this article we have written for you, we will try to give you information about what shingles is, its symptoms and causes.

What is Shingles?

Shingles is an infection of the skin and nervous system caused by a virus called the varicella-zoster virus (VZV). VZV also causes chickenpox. In people who have had chickenpox, the virus can remain inactive in nerve cells and develop into shingles years later. Shingles cause a painful rash on one side of the body, usually the trunk and face. The disease usually heals within 2-4 weeks, but in some cases the pain may last longer.

What Are the Symptoms of Shingles?

Symptoms of shingles are:

  • Pain, burning, tingling, or tenderness on one side of the body,
  • Formation of red rashes and blisters in the painful area,
  • Blistering and crusting of the blisters,
  • Fever, headache, chills and malaise, loss of appetite and nausea,
  • Signs of infection in the eyes,
  • Face or ears,
  • Swelling of the lymph nodes,

What Causes Shingles?

The cause of shingles is the varicella-zoster virus. In people who have chickenpox, the virus remains inactive in nerve cells and becomes active when the immune system is weakened, causing shingles. Factors that weaken the immune system include:

  • Aging,
  • Diseases that weaken the immune system,
  • Drugs that suppress the immune system,

Early diagnosis and treatment of shingles reduces the risk of complications and shortens the duration of the disease. If you notice symptoms of shingles, you should contact a healthcare professional as soon as possible.

Which Doctor Should Be Seen for the Treatment of Shingles?

Shingles is a painful skin rash caused by the varicella zoster virus, also known as herpes zoster. This disease occurs when the virus stays dormant in nerve cells after childhood chickenpox and then becomes active again. You may have doubts about which doctor to go to for the treatment of shingles.

For the treatment of shingles, you can first consult your family doctor. Your family doctor will evaluate your condition and can prescribe the necessary medications. However, when more specific evaluation and treatment is needed, your GP may refer you to a dermatologist. Dermatologists are experts in diagnosing and treating skin diseases and skin-related problems.

If you have nerve pain due to shingles and the pain is severe, you may need to see a neurologist (a neurologist). Neurologists are experts in diagnosing and treating problems with the nervous system and can help treat nerve pain caused by shingles.

How Is Shingles Diagnosed?

The diagnosis of shingles is usually made as a result of the patient’s complaints and the doctor’s evaluation of the skin rash by physical examination. Symptoms of shingles are:

  • Skin sensitivity such as pain, burning, tingling or tenderness redness and rashes,
  • Blisters and sores,
  • Flu-like symptoms such as headache,
  • Fever, chills and weakness.

Your doctor can diagnose shingles based on these symptoms. In some cases, however, the symptoms may not be typical and laboratory tests may be required to clarify the diagnosis. In this case, your doctor may send samples from the rash to the lab and test them to confirm the presence of the virus.

What is the Treatment for Shingles?

Treatment for shingles varies depending on the severity of the disease, the patient’s age, and general health. The main goals of treatment are to relieve pain, prevent complications and shorten the duration of the disease. Treatment for shingles may include:

  • Antiviral drugs that target the varicella zoster virus, the cause of shingles, can help reduce the duration and severity of the disease. These drugs are more effective when started early in the disease.
  • Prescription or over-the-counter pain relievers can be used to relieve pain and discomfort. In cases of severe pain, your doctor may recommend stronger pain relievers.
  • In some cases, your doctor may recommend oral corticosteroids to reduce inflammation and relieve pain. However, these drugs are not recommended for every patient as they have side effects.
  • Ointments, creams, and lotions can be used to relieve skin rashes and pain.
  • Neuropathic pain medications such as antidepressants and anticonvulsants can be used for nerve pain.

Treatment of shingles should be individualized according to the needs of the patient. Your doctor will determine the most appropriate treatment plan for you.

Is Shingles Contagious?

Shingles is an infection caused by a virus called the varicella zoster virus (VZV). This virus also causes chickenpox. Shingles is contagious, but chickenpox is transmitted, not shingles directly. That is, coming into contact with a person with shingles can lead to chickenpox in a person who has not had chickenpox. Shingles occurs when the virus is reactivated in nerve cells.

This condition usually occurs when the immune system is weakened. A person with shingles can transmit the virus to people who have not had chickenpox, but this is usually by direct skin contact. The risk of transmission is higher, especially at the beginning of the disease and when the blisters are open. After the blisters dry and crust over, the risk of infection is reduced. .

Can Shingles Disease Be Prevented?

The most effective way to prevent shingles is to become immune to the varicella zoster virus. This immunity can usually be achieved through childhood chickenpox or the chickenpox vaccine. The chickenpox vaccine is a vaccine specifically for children and provides up to 90% protection against the disease.

There is also a special vaccine against shingles. This vaccine is usually recommended for adults aged 50 and over and provides up to 70% protection against shingles. In addition, even if shingles develops in people who are vaccinated, the severity of the disease and the risk of complications are lower.

Measures to strengthen the immune system can also be taken to prevent shingles. These measures include regular exercise, a healthy diet, attention to sleep patterns, managing stress, and limiting smoking and alcohol use.

How Long Does It Take for Shingles to Heal?

The healing process of shingles may vary depending on the general health condition of the patient, age and immune system. Usually, shingles gets better in 3 to 5 weeks. Blisters form within 1-2 weeks after the first symptoms appear, and it may take up to 7-10 days for these blisters to dry and crust over.

It is important to start antiviral drug therapy in the early period in order to accelerate the healing process of the disease and reduce the risk of complications. Also, pain relievers and anti-inflammatory medications can be used to keep pain and inflammation under control. During the healing process, it is important to keep the skin clean and dry so that the blisters do not become infected.

After shingles, some people may experience a pain problem called postherpetic neuralgia. This occurs when pain persists due to nerve damage in the healing area and can last for weeks or even months. In order to reduce the risk of postherpetic neuralgia, it is important to start antiviral therapy early and keep the pain under control.

Shingles Treatment Prices in Turkey

Turkey has succeeded in making its name known to the world with its investments and Especially the latest technological devices used in diagnosis and treatment procedures have been a beacon of hope for many diseases. However, there has been an increase in health tourism in Türkiye.

  • Hospitals are large, clean, spacious and fully equipped in terms of technological equipment.
  • Turkish doctors are specialized, successful, and skilled in their fields.
  • Nurses and carers are friendly and compassionate.
  • Finding answers to the questions asked quickly and accurately.
  • Patience and understanding of all staff, including the intermediary company dealing with the patient.
  • Turkey offers holiday opportunities with its natural and historical beauties.
  • Easy transportation.
  • Diagnosis, treatment, accommodation, eating, drinking, dressing, and holiday needs can be met at affordable prices.

Such situations are shown among the reasons for preference. We can see that patients and relatives of patients who want to come to Turkey are doing research on Shingles Treatment Prices in Turkey. However, it would not be correct to give clear price information at this stage. Many factors such as the type of disease, stage, diagnosis process, treatment process, and stay in Türkiye affect the price issue. If you want to get more detailed price information, you can contact us. In addition, if you come to Turkey for treatment through us, we can facilitate your visa application process with the invitation letter sent by us to the consulate.

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