Charity: Shingles Support Society
The Shingles Support Society supplies information and advice on both medical treatment and self-help methods to deal with post-herpetic neuralgia (PHN) which can follow a bout of shingles, particularly in older patients. Shingles is caused by the herpes varicella-zoster (chickenpox) virus - in fact it is a recurrence of chickenpox. PHN can be excruciating and debilitating. If PHN develops, the sooner treatment starts, the greater the likelihood of eliminating it. Conventional painkillers will have no effect on the neurogenic pain of PHN so specialised treatment is required which many GPs are unaware of. We send out a 17-page information pack, which includes, a section for the GP by a consultant neurologist who specialises in pain relief, and self-help tips from other sufferers. We promote the shingles vaccine(s) and we are involved in helping patients to get involved in medical trials. We assist the media in obtaining the facts and case histories to raise awareness of the problem and its prevention and treatment.