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DH has got shingles

(20 Posts)
Mum2Ela Thu 23-Jun-05 08:32:56

And we are a bit confused about it tbh.

Is it contageous? If so, hoiw is it spread, anyone know? The literature from the doc wasn't too clear.

He feels ok-ish, in a bit of pain and run-down, but has gone to work. I told him perhaps he should stay home and get better because if he is stressed and run-down he might take longer to get better. Is that right?

Any info appreciated!


jessicasmummy Thu 23-Jun-05 08:34:41

mu mum had shingles when i had chicken pox and was told to stay off work.... i think he should eb at home to be honest.

Fran1 Thu 23-Jun-05 08:45:05

He should stay at home and rest. You can get very ill from this if you and he should really look after himself!

My dp is still not well after 2.5 weeks off with chicken pox, it really did run him down. I know they are different, but both from the same virus with similar symptoms.

I think that you don't catch shingles, when we have chicken pox young, the virus can stay in the system and flare up at times of stress. Another reason for your dh resting! I'm sure a GP would sign you off sick for this.

Wish your husband wellxx

Blackduck Thu 23-Jun-05 08:58:53

Needs to rest - my father had it and it can make you seriously ill if you don't take it easy. Surprised Dr. hasn't signed him off...

Mum2Ela Thu 23-Jun-05 09:08:06

The problem with my DH is that the world would have to be collapsing around him before he will have a day off work. Even when he was having major operations on the discs in his back and was meant to be laid up for 6 - 8 weeks, or house turned into an office overnight and he would have daily meetings from the bed we had moved into the living room for him.

Its gonna be difficult getting him to stay home with shingles and rest especially because he won't believe the long term effect it can have on him until it happens iyswim.

basketcase Thu 23-Jun-05 09:09:28

When you have chicken pox the virus can lie dormant in you for years and years. If you get run down for some reason - stress, over tiredness, recovering from a bug etc. - then the virus can be "reactivated" in some way (not sure exactly as not medical, just have suffered shingles myself a few years ago). This reactivation of the virus is in the form of shingles. It affects the nerve endings and is often in a ring around your stomach, can be unpleasant if on you face and head, can appear other places too I think but bit hazy on the details. I have read conflicting medical advice so forgive me if I am wrong but I do not believe you can catch shingles - you have to have had the virus in you already and it is your body reacting. Some medical people believe that you can catch chicken pox from someone with shingles but is fairly unusual (and often because they are in a vulnerable group.)
I had a week off and should have had longer - all of my skin felt very touch sensitive for months and felt quite depressed with it - very weepy which at the time was out of character. My sister had it on her head and suffered terrible headaches and was miserable for several weeks. My dad had it after a knee op. and suffered for several months.
He must take it easy and rest a lot. It will be the only way that he will recover fully and quickly. Saying that, maybe he has only a mild dose and doesn’t feel too bad?

Mum2Ela Thu 23-Jun-05 09:12:13

ATM its on the back o his leg, right up by his buttock, but he is starting to feel itchy in other places now and he thinks it is 'spreading'. He is run down and has been sleeping an awful lot for him, can't get up in the morning etc.

Just worried its going to get worse before it gets better.

basketcase Thu 23-Jun-05 09:14:03

Tell him to STAY AT HOME and rest, esp if he isn’t sleeping properly at night. If he tales time out now he might get back to work faster tahn if he struggled in for a few days and then was so exhausted he ended up havng thee weeks off really ill.

bonym Thu 23-Jun-05 09:32:26

No, it's not contagious - as basketcase said, it can only be contracted if you have already had chicken pox - it is the virus re-activating in the system. It can be very nasty and the problem is that the current treatment (Zovirax) is not much good as it needs to be started very quickly to have any effect and most cases of shingles are not diagnosed until it is too late. He should rest!

loujay Thu 23-Jun-05 09:32:42

Hi, My Gran has had shingles for 6 months now, please tell your DH that it tends to stay around for longer the more run down that you get. Also it can disappear and then return if you decide that you feel better and then go at life full pelt IYKWIM . Tell him to make the most of the weather and the tennis!!
Hope he gets better soon

hoxtonchick Thu 23-Jun-05 09:53:40

i think that if you have shingles you can pass chicken pox onto others.

emmamama Thu 23-Jun-05 10:02:02

I really think that your DH should get home and go to bed for agood few days! Does his employer know he has it? Where I worked it was classed as 'contagious' and one of my colleagues was sent home.

I had shingles on myn head at Christmas and it was truly awful. Knocked the stuffing right out of me ['scuse the pun].

edodgy Thu 23-Jun-05 10:04:51

I found this for you : shinglesfactsheet

emeraldefmach Thu 23-Jun-05 18:10:55

My husband recently had this. His rash was confined to an area on his back. He said it felt uncomfortable and his skin felt sensitive. Otherwise he was fine. Got it checked by GP, continued with work and is fine now. He was lucky.

tortoiseshell Thu 23-Jun-05 18:13:07

As others have said, you can't catch shingles, either from chicken pox or shingles sufferers - it is a virus you already have that is dormant and re-emerges. But he is contagious to anyone who has not had chickenpox, and they are at risk of chickenpox from it. He should be off work really , because chickenpox as an adult is not funny, and I presume at work he's most likely to infect adults.

Hope he's feeling better soon.

CountessDracula Thu 23-Jun-05 18:17:03

Have they given him Aciclovar? Really helped when I had it. Sympathies to him, it is horrible.

bonym Fri 24-Jun-05 09:36:22

tortoishell - it's not contagious - you can't get chicken pox from shingles (well, so dh tells me, and he's somewhat of an expert ).

bonym Fri 24-Jun-05 09:39:35

Sorry - should clarify - it is not infectious like colds, flu etc., but if fluid from a shingles blister came in contact with someone with a weakened immune system it could cause chicken pox if that person had not had it already. I believe this is quite rare though.

edodgy Fri 24-Jun-05 09:41:05

hiya read the link i posted further down it says people who are not immune to chicken pox can catch it off people with shingles if they come into contact with the fluid from the blisters.

Mum2Ela Fri 24-Jun-05 18:10:06

Thanks guys for all the info.

DH came home from work early yesterday (well, 4.30pm) as he really did feel like shite so went to bed and had a good slepp. He is a bit better today athough the rash is still there and seems to be appearing in a couple of other places )oddly, none of them are the more 'common' places like stomach and face. His seem to be staying on his leg). I have basically told him to sort himself out and rest more if he needs to, but also to take his vitamins and also to eat (he won't eat all day and then stuff himself when he gets home).

Thanks again.


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