Herpes zoster, commonly known as “shingles,” is caused by the same virus responsible for chicken pox.

After being infected with chicken pox as a child, the virus remains in your body in an inactive or dormant stage. Later in life, the virus can be reactivated if your body’s immune system breaks down. This may happen due to the normal aging process or a number of other factors, including:

  • illness, such as HIV (human immunodeficiency
  • virus);
  • fatigue;
  • emotional or physical stress;
  • poor nutrition;
  • chemotherapy or radiation therapy;
  • certain medications.


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