Concept

Zoster vaccine

Summary
A zoster vaccine is a vaccine that reduces the incidence of herpes zoster (shingles), a disease caused by reactivation of the varicella zoster virus, which is also responsible for chickenpox. Shingles provokes a painful rash with blisters, and can be followed by chronic pain (postherpetic neuralgia), as well as other complications. Older people are more often affected, as are people with weakened immune systems (immunosuppression). Both shingles and postherpetic neuralgia can be prevented by vaccination. Two zoster vaccines have been approved for use in people over 50 years old. Shingrix (GSK) is a recombinant subunit vaccine which has been used in many countries since 2017. Zostavax (Merck), in use since 2006, is an attenuated vaccine which consists of a larger-than-normal dose of chickenpox vaccine. Unlike Shingrix, Zostavax is not suitable for people with immunosuppression or diseases that affect the immune s
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