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cazzie's avatar

Anyone else get flare ups of shingles on places they've injured?

Asked by cazzie (24516points) February 2nd, 2017

I twisted my knee about three weeks ago and the pain has gotten better, but I still can’t walk without crutches. A week after I hurt it, I got the tell-tale rash and pain and itching and it feels like it is actually inside the joint as well, if that makes sense. Anyone else get shingle flare ups like this? What helped?

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15 Answers

Patty_Melt's avatar

It sounds like an RV. Do you have arthritis?

canidmajor's avatar

I have avoided shingles recurrences, but when I did have shingles, the first lesions formed at the exact spot on my face where I had been injured 8 months before. When I queried my physician, she said that it’s not unusual for it to happen at the site of nerve and tissue damage.

cazzie's avatar

@Patty_Melt No, I don’t have arthritis.

@canidmajor Gosh. Well, I think that what the problem is then. I’m getting really tired of these crutches.

Jeruba's avatar

Oh, how awful. It’s been a miserable experience for everyone I’ve known who had it.

I willingly paid $205 several years ago to get the shingles vaccination. I don’t know if you can get it once you’ve had an episode, but if it prevents them, it’s got to be worth it.

canidmajor's avatar

@Jeruba: The vaccine doesn’t always prevent a recurrence, but it does lessen the severity. (Or so I’ve heard)
Yeah, it’s a pretty miserable thing. And Oh! So attractive on my face! Ugh.

JLeslie's avatar

Great question. I have wondered if irritating the area might cause an eruption. A couple of times I felt like I had a shingles outbreak after I had sat on a hard service a very long time. I have an area on my bum that I get shingles. It might have been a coincidence.

I do think caffeine brings mine on. Also, I’m suspicious of chocolate.

Now that I get it on my face too, I’m worried about the sun possibly being an antagonist.

None of these things have I really connected together for sure.

jwalt's avatar

I had it a few years ago, and the doctor prescribed a steroid. The pain quickly subsided, but the remnants of the rash took some time to heal. I am not sure if they would have prescribed steroids if the rash was on my leg. In my case it was on my face, and the doctor seemed very concerned about it.

JLeslie's avatar

This is off topic, but since there have been some comments—shingles on the face has been connected with higher risk for stroke, and if near the eye can cause blindness.

I’m always hesitant to use steroids, because steroids reduce our ability to fight things off. But, maybe it helps avoid blindness or dangerous swelling? I’ve never been offered steroids when I’ve had an outbreak.

cazzie's avatar

Yepp. It’s shingles and a possible infection in the joint. Another week on crutches, off work. Not a happy camper.

JLeslie's avatar

I hope it’s not a joint infection. Be careful with that.

Sorry for your suffering.

Did they give you antivirals to take?

cazzie's avatar

I’ve had this for over 5 days so the antiviral pills won’t help. There is an over the counter cream I need to go buy.

JLeslie's avatar

Is it your first shingles outbreak? My first time lasted over three weeks. I didn’t take antivirals until my 3rd or 4th time I had an outbreak. They help a lot, more than I thought they would.

I only mention it for the future, although if I were you, if it’s really bad for you right now, I might try the pills in hopes it might help a little. It’s true the earlier you start the pills the more effective, but only 5 days in it might help. 5 days is nothing for your first outbreak, but I have no idea how long the virus is actively multiplying (I don’t know if that’s the right term) and the numbers are going up.

cazzie's avatar

Nope, not my first rodeo with shingles. Doc isn’t worried because it looks like the outbreak is already healing up. It’s just a very inconvenient place because the pain is inside my joint as well and it swells up when I walk on it without crutches. The thing that did worry her was the all around colour of the skin. It’s puffy and pink, but doesn’t ring the whole knee. She said if it does at some time this week and it feels hot to the touch, I have to go in immediately because it is a sign of an infection.

canidmajor's avatar

Just for some basic relief of pain for soft-tissue damage, I have found that an Epsom Salt soak (1½ to 2 cups in a hot bath) is a big help. Or, if you can find a magnesium lotion or body butter, you can use that instead. Sorry, can’t give you brand names, as I make my own, but I have had remarkable results.
Good luck with all this, it’s very sucky.

cazzie's avatar

@canidmajor I actually get my epsom salt by special delivery. Excellent idea. I should have been doing this. Thanks for reminding me.

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