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Shingles on face and in eye

Posted by @nancyb1 in Brain & Nervous System, Oct 9, 2011

Hi everybody. I have had shingles for about three weeks now and I am interested in chatting with folks who have experienced this. I have it on my forehead, in my hair toward my temple, in my eyebrow and on my eyelid, and in my eye. I have no vision problems, but my eye hurts and my eyelid droops.

The pain is bad when I talk, because when I get interested in a conversation, my eyebrow moves, my forehead moves, and ZING! I have burning and shooting pains. My hair hurts, too, and I can't pull it back or style it.

Anyone else want to talk about their shingles pain?

Tags: eye conditions, Infectious Disease, shingles

Anonymous, pjpmd, Bama14 and 1 others like this

Posted by @janejane, Oct 9, 2011

I had it about 15 years ago on my lower right side of face. I rocked with pain for about 4 days before I found out what was making me sick. My doctor gave me a big dose of Zovirax and it worked very quickly. It was extremely painful and looked like my face was deformed. It never returned. I hope yours heals soon .


Posted by @peace, Oct 9, 2011

I had it on my face and on my back and saw a very experienced acupuncturist in Denver who did two treatments and it was GONE! It has never returned. I hope you take good care of yourself and seek treatment right away.

ram likes this

Posted by @anon35623488, Sep 11, 2012

How does an acupuncturist help?

Patty Jean likes this

Posted by @ccalahan, Oct 14, 2011

What are your symptoms? How do you know you have shingles in your eye?

Bama14 likes this

Posted by @jpfs, Nov 3, 2011

I had a similar case of the shingles. I would strongly suggest you see a Retinologist ASAP.
My shingles affected my eye retina, not my vision and I experienced my months of treatment.


Posted by @bama14, Feb 23, 2012

Did it ever effect your stability? That's my dads problem he has 20/20 vision he just can't walk without feeling drunk this has been going on for four years any information would be helpful. You can email me at thanks


Posted by @poppop, Nov 9, 2011

I had shingles in 95 on my forehead also. It did not get in hair much. After 2 days went to DR who gave me antibiotics for it It settled in center of my forehead just below mu hair line. Had to stay of work 3 days and out of sun. It made a scab where it settled and when it came off it left a hole you could put the head of a kitchen match in. It finally came flush with other skin but left it white and a small line going to left of forehead. It is very painful and is recommended to stay out of sun several days to protect your eyes. They have a shot to take to keep them from coming back if you are around someone with chicken pox. Need good insurance to cover it for it is $380.00 Go to a DR now to protect your eyesite.


Posted by @bama14, Feb 23, 2012

I'm responding for my Dad he is not able to do so he is 72 teas old Iknow his condition pretty well. He has had shingles for going on seven years. He has other issues his main problem now is his vision in his left eye and instability problem which has been going on for about four years now, it always starts on his left eye with a burning sensation he says it feels like a bug in your eye or some one pouring salt water in it. His left side feels totally different from his right side I don't undress stand this but willing to help in any way possible. I don't know if this is a eye problem or a nuerologic problem we have been to every doctor and specialist around no one has any answers we are running out of time I have convinced him to try the mayo clinic but he is afraid that would be a wasted trip if any one has had any dealings with any of the mayo clinics and would share your story it would be greatly appreciated thanks for any input our options are depleting


Posted by @hsktuffy, Apr 25, 2012

Try saffron in tea. also B12 shots helped me.


Posted by @googoogirl, Feb 25, 2012

Hi Nancy

My name is Jennifer.

In November 2010 I had a double bone fusion of the L5, S1 with a removal of the L5 disk. About a month later I developed a small purple rash on my buttocks of all places but it was right at the end of the root tip from my incision. I called my family doctor and he put me on Fanviar which is treated for herpes virus and on top of the pain mess and this I was able to recover.

The pain was in my back and into my bottom and legs, which caused sitting a painful task.
I'm better now, I may have a small scar from it but honestly I lucked out that it didn't spread to my face and-or other parts of my body.

Good luck to you and I hope you get well soib.


Clay6970 and Anonymous like this

Posted by @clay6970, Sep 11, 2012

Jen, I am writing because my most recent EMG showed a real problem at L5>S1. What does that mean? Thanks i am looking forward to your reply. Ric


Posted by @googoogirl, Sep 12, 2012

It could be a lot of things but I think the EMG is a nerve test. I have degeneration in the disk and had the L5 removed because it was crumbled. Have they talked about doing surgery? I had a "T" lift done and they went through the back. My doctor was going to do a "P"lift but that would have meant going through the front and a Cardiovascular surgeon would of had to be there and it was too much for me so I chose to go through the back.
I don't know if that helped but I would definitely look for a good repertable Neurosurgeon to do it. Its a very labor intensive and intricate procedure. I wish you the best of luck.



Posted by @hsktuffy, Apr 25, 2012

Hi! I had shingles in my eye. I wanted someone to hit me in the head with a baseball bat, to knock me out. I was 29 at the time I had surgery on my elbow 2 days before. I went to 30 different doctors nobody knew what it was until it was full blown blisters on my face and forehead. I now have scars on my cornea and my eyes are really dry and red also have cateracts now. not sure what to do! Iam 53 now I hope that You got treament right away! got to say that was The worst pain I have ever had it was like being on fire from the inside . couldnt touch my hair or even cry.


Posted by @hsktuffy, Apr 25, 2012

Hi! I had shingles in my eye. I wanted someone to hit me in the head with a baseball bat, to knock me out. I was 29 at the time I had surgery on my elbow 2 days before. I went to 30 different doctors nobody knew what it was until it was full blown blisters on my face and forehead. I now have scars on my cornea and my eyes are really dry and red also have cateracts now. not sure what to do! Iam 53 now I hope that You got treament right away! got to say that was The worst pain I have ever had it was like being on fire from the inside . couldnt touch my hair or even cry.


Posted by @alexandramarie, May 19, 2012

I also have shingles of the eye, face. and eye. Sure didn't know pain like this existed! Vicodin doesn't help; wondering what drs. would do if I went to the ER. Would they treat me as a hypochondriac or a drug-seeker! I'm so hesitant to seek additional help but the pain is debilitating, and I don't know what to do. Thanks


Posted by @nancyb1, May 20, 2012

Hi Alexandra,
If you have not seen a doctor, go to the ER. You need antiviral meds started right away. If you did see a doc and are on the antivirals, and the pain is too much, I would think about going to a walk-in clinic or ER. Call ahead and find out how busy they are. Plus, if you still have the blisters out, you are contagious and can give the chicken pox to unvaccinated folks, so they need to know you are coming so they can isolate you. I was given Dilaudid when I was hospitalized. I needed IV anti-nausea meds to keep the antivirals down, then to keep the Dilaudid down. Having shingles in your eye can lead to blindness, so be sure you are getting the right treatment. I don't think they will see you as drug seeking, especially if you still have the blisters. They all know how painful it is. I had lightening bolts of pain in my right eye, in my head, and my hair hurt to touch. I needed drugs just to lay my head down. If I had been discharged from the hospital a day earlier than I was, I would probably have had my head shaved, it hurt so much to move my hair!


Posted by @jmney, May 20, 2012

I was diagnosed with shingles last July. I was 49. Prior to my diagnosis, I was having pain in my left ear and numbness and spasms along my jawline for about 3 weeks. I was also having headaches and felt queasy. I thought I had a sinus infection and went to a walk-in clinic and was told it was probably a dental problem and was given an antibiotic and told to see my dentist, which I did. He did not see anything wrong and sent me to the endodontist who did my root canal several months earlier, who also saw nothing wrong. I started to get tingling on my head on the left side about 3 weeks later and a rash appeared on the left side of my face and moved pretty quickly across my left forehead and into my eye. I was on an antiviral and also a gel for my eye for ten days. I was having stabbing pain behind my eye and on the left side of my head. It hurt to touch even one strand of my hair. This was the worse pain I ever had in my life. Pain meds really did not help. I did get some relief by putting ice packs on my head. I had the head pain for about 5 weeks and it got less intense after about the first week to ten days. I have still been having the burning pain in my ear and started having numbness along my jaw again and went to see an ear, nose and throat doctor 3 months ago.He put me on prednisone for ten days. It only helped a little. The doctor said that when I had shingles it was probably in my ear, too and I should have been on steroids along with the other meds I had been given at the time. I am also having some slight burning pain in my left eyelid. I also have some numbness along the left side of my tongue which affects my speech sometimes - Has anyone else experienced this? I am finding that this has been very frustrating for me and can't seem to find the right medication to ease my symptoms of postherpetic neuralgia. From what I have read about shingles, if you have pain before the rash, you are more likely to have complications with PHN afterwards.


Posted by @nancyb1, May 20, 2012

Interesting. I did not know that about early pain being a indication that you are more likely to have post-herpetic pain. I had a headache for five days before the rash. I saw the doc and she treated me for sinus infection and migraine. I do remember not being able to smile or express myself through facial gestures. If my eyebrow moved, it was very painful. I think I just hung out on my computer and tried not to talk much when I was in the hospital.


Posted by @pjpmd, Jun 16, 2012

Perhaps I missed this suggestion in the comments. You should have a trial of a medication specifically meant for neuropathic pain. The two most commonly used are Neurontin ( gabapentin, available as a generic) and Lyrica (Pregabilin, brand only). These will treat the nerve pain symptomatically. It takes many months for improvement since the nerve involved ( trigeminal) is damaged by the infection. Improvement may or may not be complete with time.


Posted by @mdedmondson, Sep 16, 2012

I developed shingles at my hairline and my eyelid about a week or so after surgery more than 3 years ago. My surgeon had no idea what it was and I finally went to my eye doctor who knew immediately when he walked into the room. I still have problems today. Not a constant pain but an almost electrical shock feeling through my forehead and eye area sometimes. Also when I brush my hair near my forehead. Any time I have a procedure, I have to begin taking anti viral drugs a few days prior and afterwards. Have not yet received the shingles vaccine but I will. Oh, and I have scars on my forehead and right around my eyebrow.


Posted by @ndt, May 30, 2013

I know this discussion is old but I'm experiencing this through my 61 year old boy friend. He had shingles on the right side of his head and eye. It's been a month. After we went on vacation, leaving our business causing stress, he came down with tenderness on his head. It excelled to the blisters and so on. He went to a clinic and they told him it was shingles and there was nothing they could do. Most of the spots have healed but his eye is still bloodshot. He can't sleep and is exhausted. I see from the responses that so much medication was given and he was given none. He is just taking over-the-counter pain killers that don't help alot. This person who hasn't gotten sick for most of his life now doesn't want to wake up if he finally falls asleep. He is a golfer and every time he goes out in the sun, it reactivates the shingles. I'm not sure what issue to force. Do I push him back to the clinic that didn't do much (he's been twice) for medication or do I push him to our dermatologist and get a new opinion. Both of us were red heads and both of us have had skin cancer. Does anyone have any suggestions on which way to go?


Posted by @jmney, Jun 20, 2013

I have not been back on this blog in awhile, so I am assuming you wrote this a few weeks ago.(2013) If your boyfriend has not gone back to the doctor, he should go ASAP. Don't go back to the clinic you went to. Go to the ER if there is no other clinic to go to. There is a specific antiviral medication that he needs to be on. Also, if it gets in his eye, he could go blind. I had shingles two years ago on my head, face and in my eye. (see my entry on May 19, 2012). I am still having problems with pain and numbness.

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