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Post-Herpetic Neuralgia

Posted by Anonymous-592466d4 in Just Want to Talk, Mar 11, 2012

I had Shingles from from mid-July to mid-August 2011, while on a visit to Phoenix(US). The area was on my torso on left side, in a patch of 4 inches, all round, starting from 2inches above belly-button to back center line. Dr prescribed Acycyclovir on the first day itself. After all the scabs fell off, Post-Herpetic Neuralgia started appearing. At first i was having pain in my lower part of the left lung, even while walking. I was virtually dragging my feet. The pain was severe while on a road trip, due to bumps of the vehicle. Any light clothing, like a vest, was giving an electric shock like sensation on the area affected. The cool air from airconditioner was giving a burning sensation & ceilng fan's breeze was giving electric-shock like sensatons. One day I tied a crepe bandage of 6inch width,(like the one used for Varicose Veins condition), all round the torso covering the area, and slightly tight. The effect was good, that i had less pain & skin sensation of clothing, & walking was pretty comfortable. Only it had some restriction on the full expansion of my lungs, which was tolerable for the period of walking. Now I keep my torso bare while at home. Slowly the walking got better & i could attain 75% of my usual speed in 3 months. But the pain while road travel remains, & is a bit less with the crepe bandage in place. So I avoid road travel nowdays & undertake only if essential.
I engage myself in some activity or my hobbies all thro' the day & do not brood over the bodily discomforts. By God's grace the sleep at night is comfortable.

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Posted by @hoelzle, Apr 8, 2012

I developed shingles about the same time you did, May 2011. It started with what felt like muscle pain in my right arm, shoulder, upper chest and upper back. The pain was only on my right side and I figured I had strained a muscle. About 3 days later I developed the rash . I was away from home and went to an insta care facility. I was prescribed an anti viral and told that since I came in at the first sign of the rash that I probably wouldn't have a bad case. The rash wasnt too bad and healed almost completely after about a month. The horrible skin sensitivity and burning/itching, stabbing pain, and deeper pain is still with me though not as bad as it was during the first week or so of the rash. I actually went to the emergency room one night because I was having such horrible pain that others around me thought i was having a heart attack.

It has now been almost a year and the pain and sensitivity has become a fact of life. I've been to several docters trying to find relief and finally was prescribed Lyrica. It helps enough that I can get dressed now and can sleep several hours at a time if I'm tired enough. I was also prescribed a narcotic pain medication Hydrocodone I believe it was but It made me dizzy weak and sick feeling so havent been able to use it. I've been told that anti depressants will also help but havent tried that.

I've found that certain types of material are more tolerable than others. I cannot wear my nylon night gowns and now sleep in either nothing or a cotten T-shirt type night gown. A soft flannel material such as used in baby receiving blankets feels ok too. it also helps to wear looser clothing that doesn't bind the affected areas.

I'm very sorry to hear of anyone else having this horrible condition. I can only think of a couple of people I would wish it on. I warn everyone I can to go get the Vaccination. You do not want this. I feel like I'm being punished for every mistake I've ever made in my life.

If you havn't tried Lyrica, I highly recommend asking your docter about it. I was told thqt it might take several days to feel any relief from it but after 4 or 5 hours of first dose I could feel a definite difference. If I forget a dose, I'm reminded after a few hours of the missed dose by a very noticable increase in the burning and stabbing pains. Good Luck.


Posted by @tsbalan, Apr 18, 2012

I have deep concern wrt yr discomforts. In my case the Shingles rash created feelings of itching, burning,pulling of skin, insect-crawling all over, hair-raising on ends many times, pin pricks, etc. But it is not a debilitating disease. BUT NEVER SCRATCH WITH YR FINGERS ANY WHERE. Then it will spread wildly. It was a big effort to desist from the temptation of scratching. Sleep was almost in bits & pces. But by God's grace I was able to control my urge to scratch, by saying my prayers all times & by wearing a pair of cotton socks on both hands as mittens. U went to Emergency room one night, I went to the kitchen to fetch the kitchen knife to scrape off all the skin!! But my toddler grandson uttered "HAKUNA MATATA< HAKUNA MATATA" ( Do not worry, be happy) in his sleep at that time!! (Ref- Walt Disney's Lion King). It was a God-sent message!! I turned back to my bed. Remember all these discomforts r not transferable to anyone, however dear they r to u. By keeping yr faith in God, the bad days will be over. Be bold & never give way to dejection. It is said that THE DARKEST HOUR PRECEDES DAWN. I wish u all the patience & hope to wait for that dawn. I hv also been to a Neuro Physician & he has prescribed Lyrica & I am taking that for the last 10days. Effect is still to be seen. God bless you. Best wishes.

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