Nearly one third of Americans develop shingles at some point in their lives. This viral infection, which most commonly affects older adults, can cause pain and other uncomfortable symptoms, but treatment options are available for relief from shingles pain. 


What Is Shingles?


Shingles is an infection that comes from the virus varicella zoster. This is the same virus that causes chickenpox, and people who get shingles had chickenpox earlier in life. Shingles causes a painful rash that can appear on any area of the body. It most commonly occurs as a section of blisters on either side of the torso.


The shingles rash generally causes shooting pain and will develop into blisters. These blisters typically dry out over a week to 10 days. However, pain may linger even after the virus has run its course. This may develop into postherpetic neuralgia, or PHN. This chronic pain syndrome is experienced by a significant number of people who get shingles and typically causes a stabbing or burning pain in the location of the initial shingles outbreak. 


Symptoms of Shingles 


The most common symptoms of shingles are:


  • Sharp or burning pain

  • Numbness

  • Tingling

  • Skin sensitivity

  • A red, inflamed rash

  • Blisters 

  • Itchiness 


For some patients, shingles is also accompanied by fever, headache, fatigue, and/or light sensitivity. 


Symptoms of Postherpetic Neuralgia


Postherpetic neuralgia can cause one or more of the following symptoms:

  • Sharp, burning, stabbing, or aching pain that lingers for three months or more after the shingles rash has gone away

  • Skin sensitivity, even to a light touch

  • Numbness

  • Itching 


Treatment for Shingles


Pain from shingles and postherpetic neuralgia can be disruptive to your daily routine. For relief from this pain and greater overall wellness, we provide an integrative treatment approach. Through interventional treatments and alternative pain relief methods, we’ll make sure that you get back to your favorite activities without the discomfort of shingles pain. 


Interventional Treatment


For patients experiencing postherpetic neuralgia, select interventional treatments can ease pain and discomfort. We offer the following minimally-invasive treatments as outpatient procedures, allowing for fast results and a short recovery period.


  • Thoracic epidural injections

  • Trigeminal nerve block


Complementary Treatments


Nutritional changes can strengthen your immune system, helping your body fight off the shingles virus. We provide individualized nutrition and wellness coaching for shingles pain. By optimizing your intake of vitamins and nutrients, as well as limiting sugars and saturated fat, you may find relief from shingles pain. 

In addition to nutrition and wellness coaching, we offer the following alternative methods for shingles pain treatment:


  • Acupuncture

  • Massage therapy

  • Biofeedback

  • Stretching and exercise

  • Physical therapy

  • Physical modalities such as yoga and Qi-Gong

  • Mindfulness meditation


If you’re struggling with pain from the shingles virus, don’t hesitate to reach out to us today for treatment options.