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One million people in the United States come down with shingles every year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 2. Women with shingles often experience breast pain when the rash that is characteristic of this condition spreads to the skin of one breast, states the National Institutes of Health 23. Always consult a physician to rule out conditions including infection, cancer and pregnancy, all of which typically cause breast tenderness.
If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.
In those who have previously had chickenpox, the varicella-zoster virus remains in the body, sometimes reemerging years later in the form of shingles 2. according to the MayoClinic.com. Shingles causes pain, itching, rash and blisters 2. The rash often occurs on half the back, wrapping around to the side and chest. Blisters break and scab after several days. Fever, headache and fatigue frequently accompany shingles 2. When shingles occurs on the breast area, women experience intense pain, burning and itching 23.
About Breast Dimpling
Any person who has had chickenpox has the potential to develop shingles 2. The two main risk factors for developing shingles are age--shingles occurs most commonly in those age 50 and older--and a weakened immune system, according to the Mayo Clinic.com 12. Several conditions cause lowered immunity including HIV/AIDS, cancer and certain medications.
Approximately 20 percent of people afflicted by shingles experience pain in previously affected areas after the original shingles infection has ended, a condition known as post-herpetic neuralgia, according to the National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 2. This causes long-term breast pain if the skin over the breast was afflicted during the shingles outbreak 23. This complication develops when damaged nerves mistakenly send pain signals to the brain. Pain medications provide temporary relief until the condition subsides.
Home Remedy for Ingrown Hairs on the Breast
A secondary bacterial infection develops following shingles if the skin is not well cared for, particularly at the blistering phase 2. This causes pain, redness and inflammation in the breast tissue if this is the location of the bacterial infection 3. Address bacterial infections by thoroughly cleaning the area and using oral or topical medications, such as antibiotics as prescribed by your physician.
Shingles heals on its own within several weeks 2. Treatment focuses mostly on pain relief though antivirals are typically used. Narcotics, antidepressants, anticonvulsants and topical numbing medications provide pain relief. Address breast pain with prescribed medications, over-the-counter pain relief medications and antihistamines 3. Home treatments such as ice packs and cool baths provide relief as well. Keep the breast skin clean and dry aside from topical medications applied to the area to promote healing and to avoid bacterial infection.
About Breast Dimpling
Home Remedy for Ingrown Hairs on the Breast
Causes of Itching Breasts
Boils While Breast-feeding
Causes of Pain in the Breast Area
Can Shingles Be on Your Penis?
How to Remove Breast Hair
Vitamin E for Breast Pain
A Mild Case of Shingles
Ayurvedic Herbs for Breast Reduction
- Mayo Clinic: Shingles
- NIH: Shingles
- NIH: Breast Pain
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Shingles (Herpes Zoster) Signs & Symptoms.
- John AR, Canaday DH. Herpes Zoster in the Older Adult. Infect Dis Clin North Am. 2017;31(4):811-826. doi: 10.1016/j.idc.2017.07.016
- Yun H, Xie F, Baddley JW, Winthrop K, Saag KG, Curtis JR. Longterm Effectiveness of Herpes Zoster Vaccine among Patients with Autoimmune and Inflammatory Diseases. J Rheumatol. 2017;44(7):1083-1087. doi: 10.3899/jrheum.160685
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- Johnson RW, Bouhassira D, Kassianos G, Leplège A, Schmader KE, Weinke T. The impact of herpes zoster and post-herpetic neuralgia on quality-of-life. BMC Med. 2010;8:37. doi: 10.1186/1741-7015-8-37
- Sampathkumar P, Drage LA, Martin DP. Herpes zoster (shingles) and postherpetic neuralgia. Mayo Clin Proc. 2009;84(3):274-80.
- Pereira LB. Impetigo - review. An Bras Dermatol. 2014;89(2):293-9. doi: 10.1590/abd1806-4841.20142283
- Gershon AA, Breuer J, Cohen JI, et al. Varicella zoster virus infection. Nat Rev Dis Primers. 2015;1:15016. doi: 10.1038/nrdp.2015.16
- Naveen KN, Pradeep AV, Kumar JS, Hegde SP, Pai VV, Athanikar SB. Herpes zoster affecting all three divisions of trigeminal nerve in an immunocompetent male: a rare presentation. Indian J Dermatol. 2014;59(4):423. doi: 10.4103/0019-5154.135548
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- Jeon Y, Lee H. Ramsay Hunt syndrome. J Dent Anesth Pain Med. 2018;18(6):333-337. doi: 10.17245/jdapm.2018.18.6.333
- Kim SH, Choi SM, Kim BC, et al. Risk Factors for Aseptic Meningitis in Herpes Zoster Patients. Ann Dermatol. 2017;29(3):283-287. doi: 10.5021/ad.2017.29.3.283
- Saxena A, Khiangte B, Tiewsoh I, Jajoo UN. Herpes zoster encephalitis presenting as multiple cerebral hemorrhages - a rare presentation: a case report. J Med Case Rep. 2013;7:155. doi: 10.1186/1752-1947-7-155
- Teo HK, Chawla M, Kaushik M. A Rare Complication of Herpes Zoster: Segmental Zoster Paresis. Case Rep Med. 2016;2016:7827140. doi: 10.1155/2016/7827140
- American Academy of Dermatology. Cellulitis: Overview.
- American Academy of Ophthalmology. Herpes Zoster Ophthalmicus.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Shingles (Herpes Zoster): Clinical Overview. Feb 21, 2018.
- Mayo Clinic. Postherpetic Neuralgia. Sept 16, 2015.