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Shingles anyone??


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Hello I hope everyone is having a nice day. I am araid my moms day is fixin to get worse. I took her to the doc (PCP) yesterday as she had been having pain in her mid torso and then her breathing was getting more labored. Doc said her lungs sounded fine and gave her an antibiotic to be safe. Well I get over here this morning and she has this red,blistery rash on one side kinda under her right breast and then around in her mid back.

The doctor in me jumped on here and along with her knowledge of shingles have come to the conclussion that we are most likely looking at that. OUCH!!

I have called the onc as her PCP is out of town now until Tuesday. They should be calling me back soon as the nurse felt sure she would need to be seen if not by her onc by one of the others in the practice.

If anyone has had this or is familiar with it, I would appreciate any info you might have.

Thanks and God bless


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My grandmother had shingles a couple of years ago. It's a virus, a "continuation" of chicken pox, I believe. The doctor will know how to treat it. There are differing degrees of severity - as with chicken pox. My grandmother had an oral medication and a medicated cream to put on the rash. I think it usually lasts about a month, but I'm not 100% sure. Look it up on WebMD: http://my.webmd.com/hw/healthy_seniors/hw75435.asp

Good luck!

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I got really knocked down last Fall by everything all at once, it seemed. (kinda like now)

I had laryngitis, a heart attack, blood in urine, periodontal infection, and hypothyroidism diagnosis... all within and during the month of Nov... one year after lc diagnosis.

Add shingles to that list. Something was going on that I was that rundown. Oooo it was frightening. I had it on the S1 nerve line..from the mid-spine down across my butt and followed the nerve down the back of the leg and wrapped around to the front. Yes. Blisters and then deep scabs. I was in pretty rough shape from ALL that it is hard to say what was making me feel so dang bad...

With shingles, there is an antiviral med that she can take to shorten the normal span of the illness. It is worth checking into though. You are very astute to pick this up. If your doc. doesn't give a rapid response, then find someone who will see her today as she may still be able to get on that med... ??? If you wait too long, then the virus will just have to run the course.

I think it was zovirax or something along those lines that is Rx.

Make the calls...

Cindi o'h

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Thanks Becky and Cindi....I am almost positive thats what this is. I have learned like you said cindi that it follows a nerve line and from the few things i can find on here with pics, thats seems to be it. Yes and med have to be given within 2-3 days of the onset of the rash. Its 2pm now and i have heard from noone yet, we do have a lab appointment in the morning for an arnesep shot, so we can for sure get it seen then, but i would rather go today because of the timeframe. Maybe the ER?

Its wierd because one of the main symptoms is pain 3-5 days before the rash and Mom has been saying all week she hurt in the same way all the reports i read said. I will be really surprised if its not Shingles although I wish it would be an allergic reaction to the new laundry soap i used on her clothes.

Ill let ya know what i learn, when i learn it..


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I am pretty sure it is shingles also...like 99% sure. So then, to give her a break, then yes...ER, urgent care, whatever...the window of opportunity is short.

It is unilateral in pain and appearane...always. It does not cross the midline. If you find a book of nerve anatomy, you will be able to see exactly what nerve is affected and see exactly where that nerve goes. I have seen lots of shingles in dental practice. Some of my patients suffered horribly..it is bad on the face/ trigeminal nerve..

It didn't hurt me so much, not like I have seen others. But, I have heard lots complain plenty about it.

pritchie's mom had shingles too. she might post if she comes on today...

good luck.. Cindi o'h

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Here's what happened with me. I had some pain issues on the same side as my incision about 2 months post surgery and broke out in a rash on and under my breast on that side. What with all the stress, both physically and emotionally that I had at that time, everyone thought it must be shingles.

I went to the doctor and he said most definately it wasn't shingles but some sort of topical allergy. I got some cream from him and it went away.

It flared up again a few months later and by process of elimination, I found out it was a reaction to some foot cream that I bought and only caused a rash if I used it on my feet, which was sporadic. I got rid of that cream and haven't had any other incidents except when I went for a pedicure last summer, and they used a strong cream on my feet.

I don't know that this isn't shingles, but just wanted to alert you to my experience.


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The nurse called about 4pm and said bring her in, luckily i was standing in her living rooma nd didnt have to run pick her up too in order to get there before they closed. Anyway he (the nurse) looked and immediatly said "oh yea" so then the doc came in and same thing. Just a glance i guess is all thye need to tell.

Put her on Ayclvor (sp) for a week and double her Neurontin tp 1600mg a day. It wsa almost exactly 24hrs since she broke out, so hopefully we got in that small window. I just hope she doesnt have a rough time with this. She is so sad and depressed all the time, does nothing but sit in her recliner days and days and more days at a time never leaving the house. Its like she just sits there waiting for the next thing to happen. There have been 2 full months that she felt fine and could have donejust about anything, and now she is back to being sick again. I really worry about her frame of mind. She doesnt even get on her pc anymore, she used to live on there playing canasta.

Her breathing just seems to be getting worse and worse. I had gotten so much better after dx. Its was amazing. but ever since she had the kyphoplasty surgery its bad. very loud and labored, watches the clock for every 4 hrs so she can do a breathing treatment. i guess though this is part of the COPD acting up. Oxygen does not make it better, she can use it or not.

Sorry guys didnt mean to rag on mom, i am just really worried about her, she should be happy. She was happier going thru chemo and radiation. I guess she is adjusting to life after retirement which at this time seems to be no life.

Thanks for everthing as always this board is the bestest



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My mom just had it a few weeks ago. She had a very bad bout with it, about 7-8 years ago, and I think the virus stays dormant in your system.

She just happened to mention the very small rash on day when she was having radiation....the doc took one look at it, and put her on the meds, I think it was the same one your mom has been prescribed.

That was over a week ago, and the rash (and the pain) have totally cleared up. And she's been feeling better generally too. I think the virus may have flared up quite some time ago, before the rash appeared.

Hopefully your mom has caught it in time and the meds will knock it out quickly!

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I got hit with shingles a couple years ago. Luckily I made it in to see my dr the same day the rash showed up. I knew shingles traveled in a line and treatment meds had to be prescribed fast to prevent neuralgia from setting in. I pushed my doc's nurse for an immediate appointment. Anyone suspecting shingles needs to get to their doc ASAP. I've been a victim of cold sores since I was a young child and my doc told me chicken pox, shingles and cold sores are products of the same type of common Herpes Simplex virus. Our nerve endings remain affected by early chidhood chicken pox....the virus supposedly can lie dormant for many years in our spine. Then it sneaks up on us when we're at our weakest....immune system down or just plain old age. I keep a bottle of Valtrex in my medicine cabinet now...I've had a couple more false starts since my first rash. I truly believe it works in my case. The dose when you get the start of a cold sore is 2 pills total....one dose ea 12 hrs apart. I'd say this is one condition all of us should be familiar with....since our immune systems are prime targets of cancer treatments...And shingles is an opportunistic condition taking up easy residency in compramised patients.

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