Acupuncture for Shingles - Longmont, CO
Can shingles be extremely painful?
Shingles (herpes zoster) can vary from mildly painful to excruciating! In fact, some patients have even come into our clinic and requested to immediately remove their shirts because even the feeling of their clothes was unbearably painful.
Shingles alone can be obviously painful. It might only start with a mild tingling, itching or burning sensation. This can occur virtually anywhere: your back, waist, face, etc., but the most common place is along your ribside. When it starts, it is also possible to have flu-like symptoms such as chills, fever, fatigue or headache.
As it progresses, you will develop a rash which turns into fluid filled blisters. These will eventually rupture and within 2-4 weeks the rash will generally fade. But that doesn't always mean the pain will fade as well. In some instances, the inflammation from the shingles outbreak can inflame and even damage the local nerves leading to a painful condition known as post-herpetic neuralgia. This pain can range from mild to a complete inability to even wear clothing due to the severe nature of the pain.
So what does acupuncture and Chinese medicine have to offer? Well, in most cases, we see pain decrease or completely go away within a few days of starting treatment. Our record holders for fastest pain relief saw their pain go down in less than 24 hours! Of especially good benefit is that the inflammation can usually be decreased very quickly and this may be helpful in preventing the nerve damage associated with post-herpetic neuralgia.