What Causes Shingles?

Shingles is caused by the varicella-zoster virus, which also causes chickenpox and it is estimated that 1 in 3 people will suffer from it at one point--women being affected more often.

After you have had chickenpox, the virus lies dormant in your body, usually without causing any symptoms or problems. However, if the virus is reactivated due to stress or age-related factors, it can cause an outbreak of shingles on one side of your body. This rash consists of fluid-filled blisters that are extremely painful and can last up to several weeks or even months before fading away completely. Shingles cause pain because they reactivate in nerve cells.

The most common symptom of shingles is a red rash with small fluid-filled blisters that typically appears on one side of your body (usually the torso). Other symptoms may include itching, burning, or tingling sensations in the affected area as well as headache, fever, and general fatigue. In some cases, there may be no visible signs at all; however, some people experience nerve pain even when there are no visible symptoms present.

The Conventional Approach To Treating Shingles

Shingles is usually treated with antiviral medications that help reduce inflammation and pain. Over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen and acetaminophen can also help alleviate discomfort associated with shingles while topical creams containing capsaicin (an extract derived from chili peppers) may provide some relief from itching and burning sensations caused by the rash. Your doctor may also recommend using cool compresses or soaking in lukewarm baths to reduce itchiness and irritation caused by the rash.

The Functional Neurology Approach To Shingles

At Premier Health Of Summit, we help motivated adults struggling with shingles and lingering symptoms after the initial rash has gone. We help them with lingering chronic pain and neuralgia so they can finally reclaim a pain-free, confident life feeling and look their best… especially if they feel unheard and literally don’t know what to do next.

When it comes to shingles it’s important to understand how it can be misdiagnosed and have lingering complications. Approximately 18% of people who contract shingles have lasting complications known as postherpetic neuralgia (PHN). PHN is a long-term nerve pain in the location where the rash was. The likelihood of developing PHN increases with age.

Other complications include:

  • Secondary bacterial infection
  • Vision loss
  • Hearing loss
  • Pneumonia
  • Hearing problems,
  • Brain inflammation (encephalitis)

Although shingles is not difficult to diagnose, it can often be mistaken for other conditions when the patient doesn’t have the characteristic rash. Often it is misdiagnosed as arthritis, heart or chest pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, trigeminal neuralgia, and even abdominal pain. Unfortunately, this can delay the proper treatment of shingles and send patients on a wild goose chase to find the source of their pain. Shingle pain can also be incredibly intense leading conventional doctors to search for life-threatening issues and not consider a shingles diagnosis.

It’s important to work with a qualified practitioner who can identify the root causes of your nerve pain and help you map out an effective, full brain & body restoration program.

In order to determine a diagnosis of shingles and properly treat each individual and specific case, Dr. Anderson conducts an in-depth evaluation in three ways: structurally, neurologically, and metabolically. These three aspects of a patient’s body help determine exactly what is happening and provide the necessary information to determine the proper treatment for each specific case.

That’s why it is also important to have a metabolic workup to check blood chemistry. This enables us to determine if you’re having an adverse reaction to certain foods which can cause inflammation.

It will indicate if there are blood sugar problems, anemia, adrenal issues, and many other metabolic imbalances. Knowing your blood chemistry helps facilitate effective nutritional changes that can be sustainable and encourage proper body functions.

Once we do the correct testing, we craft a precise treatment plan unique to your needs that includes all the elements you need to finally address and even reverse fibromyalgia so you can live a pain-free, confident life feeling and looking your best… especially if you feel unheard and literally don’t know what to do next.

Celiac Disease

Claim Your Free Phone Consultation

So if you’re ready to explore how to approach fibromyalgia, then claim your free 10-minute phone consultation with Dr. Brian Anderson to help you map out an effective, technologically-advanced treatment strategy based around…

  • resetting your body’s pain-signaling pathways
  • managing pain levels through a variety of drug-free modalities
  • reducing inflammation with supplements and dietary changes
  • increase energy levels
  • improve sleep quality
  • address emotional issues related to fibromyalgia
  • relaxing tight muscles with massage, acupuncture, and physical manipulations
  • reduce overall stress levels

We’ll explore your desired treatment goals, and we go over what’s expected and whether our functional neurology approach to fibromyalgia is right for you.

We offer these short phone consults for FREE so you can get more clarity & confidence on how to reverse your fibromyalgia and finally reclaim a pain-free, confident life feeling and looking your best.

We believe you can't make new decisions without new information, so this phone consult is your chance for a personalized assessment.

Click here to claim your free phone consultation or call or text our office at 908.913.7508 to schedule.

Take The First Step Today On Your Journey Back To Health

Do you have questions about starting your path back to health? Our patient coordinator is standing by, happy to answer any questions you have to determine if our approach is right for you.


Areas Served

Premier Health of Summit is located in Summit, New Jersey, and serves clients throughout central New Jersey and surrounding areas, including New Providence, Berkeley Heights, Chatham, Madison, Florham Park, Springfield, Maplewood, Union, Westfield, Scotch Plains, Ridgewood, Hackensack, Hoboken, Jersey City, Staten Island, Lakewood, Princeton, Lawrenceville, Flemington, Basking Ridge, Bernardsville, Mendham, and Clinton as well as Bergen County, Passaic County, Morris County, Essex County, Hunterdon County, Union County, Somerset County, Middlesex County, and Monmouth County.

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