Vaccine for Shingles
The shingles vaccine (Zostavax®) has been shown to reduce a person's risk of getting shingles by about 50 percent. It was previously approved only for people over the age of 60. However, it can now be given to people as young as 50. Even when the vaccine does not prevent shingles, it seems to reduce the complications that can occur with shingles, such as:
- Chronic pain ("postherpetic neuralgia")
- Vision problems.
The vaccine is given as a single injection, just under the skin of the upper arm. Common side effects include redness, pain, swelling, and other reactions at the injection site. If you are sick or not feeling well before getting the vaccine, let your healthcare provider know. It may be a good idea to postpone your vaccination.
(To learn more, click Shingles Vaccine. This article takes an in-depth look at how the vaccine works, what to expect, and more.)