Facebook Pixel

Shingles Causes & Risks


It is caused by the varicella zoster virus. This is the same virus that causes chickenpox . Shingles occurs in people who already had chickenpox. After causing the first chickenpox infection, the virus does not leave the body. It settles in nerve roots near the spinal cord. Once reactivated, the virus travels along nerve paths to the skin. There it causes pain and a rash.

Shingles Blisters

© 2008 Nucleus Medical Art, Inc.

Risk Factors

These risk factors increase your chance of developing shingles. Tell your doctor if you have any of these risk factors:

Shingles can occur in those with no known risk factor other than age.

Shingles cannot be transmitted from one person to another. But a person who has never had chickenpox and never received the varicella vaccine , could get chickenpox if he came in contact with a person who has shingles.

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Copyright © 2022 EBSCO Publishing All rights reserved.

The Latest in Shingles Causes & Risks

ASK Your Health Question

It's FREE and you'll get a response within 24 hours


POST Info, Tips & Stories

Inspire others to learn from your experiences. Tell your story!

Get Email Updates

Shingles Guide

Have a question? We're here to help. Ask the Community.


Health Newsletter

Receive the latest and greatest in women's health and wellness from EmpowHER - for free!