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Treatments for Shingles

While there are no treatments to cure shingles, there are treatment goals, such as:

  • Shortening the length of the illness
  • Preventing complications, such as postherpetic neuralgia
  • Relieving pain and discomfort
  • Preventing the rash from becoming infected

Treatment involves:

Lifestyle changesMedicationsAlternative and complementary therapiesOther treatments

At this time, there are no surgical procedures for the treatment of shingles.

Revision Information

  • Herpes zoster. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated May 20, 2013. Accessed May 30, 2013.

  • NINDS shingles information page. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke website. Available at: http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/shingles/shingles.htm. Updated January 10, 2013. Accessed May 30, 2013.

  • Shingles. The American Academy of Dermatology website. Available at: https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/contagious-skin-diseases/shingles. Accessed May 30, 2013.

  • Shingles (herpes zoster). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/shingles/about/overview.html. Updated January 10, 2011. Accessed May 30, 2013.

  • Stankus SJ, Dlugopolski M, et al. Management of herpes zoster (shingles) and postherpetic neuralgia. Am Fam Physician. 2000;61(8). Available at: http://www.aafp.org/afp/2000/0415/p2437.html. Accessed May 30, 2013.