what is internal shingles?
I have been having acute pain in my upper left quadrant which radiates to my back...just behind my stomach. My skin has become numb in spots, yet it itches and burns. I have never been in this much pain in all of my life. I thought perhaps I had shingles, but haven't developed any blisters. Someone told me they could be internal shingles, but I can't find any info regarding these. I had my gallbladder out 3 months ago, and have no intestinal symptoms such as diahrrea or vomiting. Just his horrible pain that nothing seems to help. I would appreciate any feedback as soon as possible. I have another appointment with my doc on Tuesday...but would love an answer sooner.
You don't have to have blisters for it to be shingles. I woke up one morning and had pain on my right side. The pain disappeared in a day or two but about five small red welts appeared. Then I noticed a small area of numb skin near my navel and on my back by the spine. That was the extent of my symptoms and my doctor concurred that I had had a mild case of shingles.
I've never heard the term "inner" shingles before. Shingles is the eruption of acute, inflammatory, herpetic vesicles on the trunk of the body along a peripheral nerve and sometimes elsewhere. It is also known as Herpes Zoster. The Chicken Pox virus (varicella-Zoster) lies dormant in segments of spinal or cranial nerves and becomes reactivated (mostly due to physical or emotional stress) in the form of shingles. Maybe this is where the term "inner" comes from.
Whether the pain stays or goes is very individual. The total duration of the disease is usually from 10 days to 5 weeks. Some people have pain for a much longer time period.
Internal shingles is extremely rare. It is caused by a virus. There are only 6 known reported cases. I know this because my uncle is intensive care fighting for his life because he was found to have internal shingles. From what was explained to me is that this type of shingles attacks your internal organs, therefore, you may have other symptoms that resemble other ailments, like the flu. It is extremely serious and you should contact your doctor immediately!! My uncle started last week with feeling like he had the flu, fever, body aches. By Friday, he couldn't move. He was in the hospital where they found his gallbladder was enlarged and associated it to that. After surgery, he began to have organ failure, kidneys and lungs were effected. His liver is now partially damaged and we dont know if he will make it. I have read some information on the web, and there is limited information about it, but I would not wait. If you feel like something is wrong, get checked out asap. Have them run test for shingles. It was the pathologist who found the virus and now we are trying to work with a well know infectious disease specialist to find a cure. You will not necessarily see blisters with this type of shingles. It is internal. Get checked out and dont wait.
Originally Posted by daw
Shingles - very painful. I had it six years ago. I was told by the doc that the earlier you treat it, the less chance you have of it coming back. If you ever suspect you have shingles, go see the doc asap. b
I started getting shingles 2 years ago (yes they can be recurrent - i've had it 3 times since then, but the subsequent infections were better controlled with acyclovir from the onset).
Anyway, the first time I got shingles, it took 12 days from the onset of the pain to develop any blisters, not the 2-3 days that the textbooks say. So noone knew what was going on with me! I had extreme chest pain under the left armpit, radiating to the left center of my back. On day 12, I developed a very small band of blisters under my armpit (to the left of my left breast), and a few on my back in the same plane. I didn't have more than 12 blisters total, but boy did it hurt! And it hurt really bad for 6 weeks, then began getting better.
Now I know the warning signs (feels like muscle pain, pulled muscle on one side of the body) and I immediately start acyclovir. Taking acyclovir from the onset of symptoms for me has basically prevented the blisters from coming out - buy I know it is shingles because the 3 main blisters under my armpit get red and larger - they keep coming back in the same place.
Is there a test for shingles or is it a clinical diagnosis?
Diagnosis is usually clinical, because when you see shingles that are external, you know what it is!
The tests for this are:
-- Direct fluorescent-antibody stain 1 (DFA) via scraping cells of lesion
-- Viral culture via swab of lesion
-- Serology IgG antibody via blood draw
-- PCR 4 (Polymerase chain reaction) via cerebrospinal fluid or tissue
Here's a web site that can tell you everything you want to know: [url]http://www.massgeneral.org/neurology/shingles/[/url]