Shingles pain relief

herpes zoster day 6. lesions joining other lesions.

herpes zoster day 6. lesions joining other lesions.

There are a “Big Three” of shingles treatment: antivirals, rest, and pain management.  At a recent American Academy of Dermatology meeting treatment of shingles was discussed.  The Big 3 will help halt the progression of the disease and decrease viral shedding.



  • Rest is important and mandatory for treatment.
  • Antiviral treatment will only work if it is started in the first 72 hours.  There are a few antivirals that can be started. They are all in the same “family” but are dosed at different times and some are more expensive.
  • Pain medicine may be prescribed by your physician.

Additional therapies may help…

  • Steroids by mouth may help if the area looks inflamed.
  • Lidocaine patches and capsaicin cream are both effective for topical pain and work best if used consistently.
  • Gabapentin is also a pill that can help blunt the nerve pain that may occur with or after shingles outbreaks.

About drlesliegreenberg

I have been practicing as a family physician for over 20 years--as both an educator of physicians and clinician. From infancy to the elderly, I perform obstetrics and general medicine. I love my career and am passionate about my field of knowledge and my patients. Follow me on Facebook at Leslie Md Greenberg Medical Disclaimer The content of this website is provided for general informational purposes only and is not intended as, nor should it be considered a substitute for, professional medical advice. Do not use the information on this website for diagnosing or treating any medical or health condition. If you have or suspect you have a medical problem, promptly contact your professional healthcare provider.
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