42 yr old Female with Shingles almost every month (nerve pain is killing me) I need some help

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Apologies this is so long. if you want, you can scroll to the end...

I'm MAJORLY dying from Shingles nerve pain today. I've had 3 Covid shots so far and thankfully have avoided Covid entirely. I've been super careful though- because I have an irrational fear of getting Covid) . I am divorced and moved back in with my mom so I'm not alone. I'm scheduled for my fourth booster on Friday of Moderna but I think I need to cancel b/c I’m laying in bed with the worst Shingles nerve pain down my leg that I’ve ever experienced in my LIFE. Since getting my first Covid shot my shingles has reoccurred pretty much every month (so basically monthly or every 2 months for the past 2 years almost) and it seems like the nerve pain is much much more intense. Today I have tried on 10 pairs of pants trying baggier and softer because the fabric against my skin is excruciating. I also took an anxiety pill. I have a new CA doctor since I moved back home from NYC. I don't have insurance, although my NYC Medicaid is still valid due to the pandemic but I cant use it here so I am private pay... (lost job during covid and I am not working at the moment) . Anyway the new DR gave me Aciclovir and that did not work at all. I suffered through about 3 months of outbreaks with no anti-viral and thought I would not be able to cope with life. Luckily I finally realized the difference in meds from what I used to take, and back got on Valtrex (Vaciclovor) cause that's what helped me in the past. Today, Valtrex works to help it but doesn’t stomp it out, like it used to before my Covid vaccine. The pain is so bad Advil doesn’t touch it, not even the hospital grade Ibuprofin or Keterolax that I have left over from my kidney stones. I do not want to take Opiods or anything addictive. I have ZSH /internal shingles (I think), cause I do not have the torso rash) but I do sometimes get sores on my gum inside my mouth and my throat and I have typically had a rash in my "downtown" area during prior outbreaks but it used to be that if I took the Valtrex at the first sign i would not get a full outbreak. My old old old Dr just said the downtown issue was Herpes. So who knows. But right now for example I have 1 painful bump on my gum but my whole left leg (esp my thigh) is on fire like it was badly burned with incredibly intense nerve pain that is so bad its giving me high blood pressure, but no rash. Not even "down there". This shingles without rash (or shingles with a few bumps down there) usually occurs right around my cycle almost every month since i was vaxxed. PS: i am NOT an anti-vaxxer and still keep getting the boosters. I know that each time I get this Nerve pain and reoccurrence, I am at risk for serious complications and permanent nerve damage. PS I started getting these outbreaks when I was in college around 23 years old. I had chickenpox as a kid. As I got older they became so infrequent that I could go a year or more without getting them (usually I got them when I got really stressed). I am now a 42 year old healthy female. I hear there are new tests for Shingles and ZSF that weren't available when i was diagnosed with "herpes". Everyone I have talked to that has herpes does not get this severely sick bed ridden feeling or the intense nerve pain that usually occurs on my left hand, inside left arm, and my left leg (unless it was their first occasion). I also hear most people only get shingles ONCE? Maybe I have Shingles and HVSII? But I was with only my husband from 17 until a few years ago- regardless, it is literally unbearable right now.

Here are my Questions:

**how can I reduce the skin/nerve pain? I'm taking 1G of valtrex 2X daily. Does Prednisone help? If so how much? Gabapentin does nothing for me.

does anyone else have this ZSF? basically nerve pain up and down where the rash would be, but with no rash?

I also feel so ill and tired and cannot do anything when i feel this way, it hurts so bad! I've had kidney stones and those are a walk in the park compared to this.

**does anyone know of a good DR in the SF Bay Area that is an expert on Shingles or ZSF?

** is it normal to get this every month?

** there is no way that this is a coincidence that this started happening so often after the Covid Vax. Why did it do this to me?

** Does anyone else have a similar experience to mine?

Thank you so much, any ideas, suggestions or just support would really help me right now 😦

From, "please don't touch my skin, I'm dying"

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  • Posted

    hi Friend, I dont have answers to your questions but i am curious to follow your thread if you do start to get answers. i also live in the bay area and my doctor promised to send me to a specialist after my third round of shingles which just began today. my outbreaks have been every couple months so i do get some relief. they are painful and always come with some vertigo and nausea and headaches. one of my first symptoms I am realizing, is a tickle in my throat. then instate getting the nerve pain, then I get nausea and vertigo and that's when the blisters usually show up on my left side. so far, I haven't been able to link these outbreaks to anything besides stress and even with that I don't feel I am so usually stressed which makes my case feel mysterious and frustrating. I wanted to reply to you to help you feel not so alone amd since we live nearby if I do get in touch with a specialist I will be happy to share what they say. Best to you and your healing!

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