Hints/Tips for Surviving Shingles??

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by susiestar, Nov 30, 2011.

  1. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    My mom just told us that my dad has shingles. It started before Thanksgiving and she finally dragged him to the Urgent Care clinic (which is amazingly excellent here, thankfully). The doctor walked in and just looked at him and said it was shingles before she even got close to him. He is in a HUGE amount of pain - seems the face is one of the most painful places to have them.

    I sent some lidoderm patches over as that is the only diagnosis that medicare will cover them for. I know he will get an rx for them once reminded, but they will help in the meantime. If you know of ANYTHING else that will help either with the pain or help them go away sooner, I would appreciate it. I can't even go give him a hug because I can still catch chicken pox - have had them twice and a 3rd case would be dangerous and I have no immunity to them.I am not even allowed to have the vaccine for ckn pox, but it wouldn't be effective for a couple of weeks anyway.

    Thanks for the ideas and good thoughts.
  2. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    OMG - many HUGS. All I know is that they are unbelievably painful. Hopefully doctor will give him pain medications.
  3. jal

    jal Member

    I had shingles in in the summer of my freshman yr of college. There was a cream the dr rx'd I believe called Zostrix which is a high potency analgesic. I think it is now sold over the counter. Used to be prescription only. I hope he feels better soon!
  4. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    My mom just had shingles on her back and the nursing home put cream on it-I'm wondering if it's the cream Jal mentioned. I hope he feels better soon!
  5. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Oh no! Poor guy.
    I recommend the cream others mentioned here, as well.
  6. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member Staff Member

    It's a darn good thing she got him into urgent care. When it's on the face, if not caught early, blindness can occur. Where it appears on your body is wherever the virus has settled into the spine. My father in law had it on his face twice, on his forehead (popped up on the same spot). The Zoxtrix cream helped him immensely. Stress is usually what brings it on, so make sure he and your mom know that he needs to be as stress-free as possible.
  7. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    I had shingles last winter on my face and just last month on my side. OMG -- it hurts!!!

    There is a very expensive anti-viral that helps. There is also a very cheap medication that helps a lot with the pain......amitriptyline. It is actually an old AD but it tricks the nerves into not transmitting the pain sensations to the brain.
  8. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member Staff Member

    OMG, Amitriptyline is an awesome drug, isn't it? I took it years ago because of back spasms. The spasms would be so bad, they'd cause me to vomit. Elavil is the brand name. It has so many uses.
  9. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I had a coworker that an awful case of them and they went into her eye on one side of her face. She was put on an antiviral, percocets, and I think that cream you guys are talking about. She also couldnt go outside without dark glasses because it hurt her vision so badly. She had to go to the eye dr several times and I had to drive her. It was touch and go whether she would lose her sight or not but luckily she didnt.
  10. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

    Sometimes neurontin(gabapentin) will help. My coworkers son had shingles, and that really helped him.
  11. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Thanks, I will suggest these. I HATE not being able to give him a hug. HATE HATE HATE it.

    He saw his reg doctor today and the doctor suggested lidoderm patches cut to size for his forehead. dad told him I had already suggested it. Seems the doctor had a "Doh!" Homer Simpson moment, according to my dad. After Dad told him I already suggested them, the doctor remembered that I am the reason most of his patients with muscle/joint pain of any kind are usuing them. When I figured out how amazing they are, I pushed and prodded until my parents and an aunt all asked their own docs about the patches. Now their docs are also using them, lol.

    If you EVER get shingles again, PUSH the doctor to rx these. they are expensive, about $200 for 30, and most ins co's cover them. Medicaid/state kids ins will only cover them for shingles, but private ins usually isn't that picky.

    Thanks for the ideas. he is miserable. And alone for a day or three, see thread re: my mom.
  12. everywoman

    everywoman Active Member

    MY best friend just got over a case that lasted 3 months---she could not work, do housework, nothing---she was in incredible pain---they misdiagnosed at first as a pulled muscle, so she was late getting on antivirals---she had her 3rd nerve block last week and is finally feeling better.
  13. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    I was looking through a sales flyer last night and saw that Zostrix (sp) cream listed with the topical arthritis creams, in case you go looking for it at the store.