Zona: the advice of the specialist doctor

Interview with Dr. Françoise Le Pallec, dermatologist.

Why do we develop shingles when we are supposed to be protected against the chickenpox virus?

It is precisely the people who have had chicken pox (significant or attenuated) who develop shingles later, because the virus remains latent in a paravertebral ganglion ("he falls asleep"), and reactivates in adulthood following the sensory nerves connecting this ganglion to a cutaneous territory. Antibodies potentially produced by chickenpox do not prevent this "awakening".

Can we develop shingles if we have been vaccinated against chicken pox?

Yes, because if the vaccination was carried out in early childhood, the incidence of chickenpox seems to increase abruptly several years later, because the vaccine protection seems insufficient; so we can still develop a chickenpox years later, and therefore trigger a shingles later.

In addition, currently vaccination is not routinely done, but at least 90% of the population should be vaccinated to prevent the age of chickenpox from moving from childhood to adulthood. this is the case now, so even vaccinated you can catch a chicken pox later and develop shingles later.

Can stress lead to shingles?

Stress is recognized as an inhibitor of our immunity. When it occurs, our immune defenses diminish and latent viruses present in our body reactivate, often explaining the appearance of shingles.

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