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Because we have Auto Immune Diseases,we are at an increased risk to contract Shingles. I had Shingles in 2004. I was on an Immune Suppresant,Imuran...I had just come off the drug to TTC and contracted Shingles then. It was the most severe pain I have ever experienced in my entire life. I still have the Post Herpectic Neurlogia and it affects me most when I am under stress.
I had them in 2003. It was in the form of herpes zoster on my forehead. Same virus as chicken pox and the shingles you are discussing, but just a different location and slightly different symptoms. It didn't hurt me, but it looked awful. My husband was afraid people would think he beat me up. It was this ugly looking mass of bumps all raised directly in the center of my forehead. I'm not even going to explain what else you can see since it was just disgusting.
The hospital I went to was a teaching hospital and the residents there all concluded it was herpes zoster and gave me Valtrex and told me to visit my primary care doctor. I had just gotten a new one so I made an appointment with him. I got to his office and he just stared at it. He said he didn't think it was herpes and just reached his non-gloved hand over and poked it. Not felt it like a knowledgeable doctor would, but he poked at it. Then said well if the doctors at the hospital thinks that what it is, then I guess continue with the medicine they gave you. GAH! My idiot doctor at the time didn't know what it was. You'd think that just hearing what the hospital said, you'd want to protect yourself even if you didn't know if they were correct in their diagnosis. I don't even know if he washed his hands before or after touching my forehead! I also never returned to him. I got a new doctor.
Meanwhile, the Valtrex worked well and I'm left with a scar in the middle of my forehead. Most likely due to me picking at it before it no longer looked like a pimple. My bad, but it's ok. Nothing really offensive anyhow.
I know someone that had the Shingles in the more well known area of on their side. I had a little bit, but it was more annoying than painful. My friend's mother has it and it hurts her a lot. You always know when it bothered her because she was a bit more cranky at the time and didn't want to be touched. She was a very nice person so her "cranky" wasn't really that bad.
Eliza - Wife to husband, Jason. Mother to twin boys, Cameron and Kiefer (6-24-08)