Written for Mediaplanet‘s 2014 Dermatology campaign published in the National Post.
Published July 2014 in online and print.
Chicken pox is a common concern for children, but the virus behind this disease does not disappear along with its characteristic red spots. Instead, the varicella zoster virus remains in nerve roots and can reactivate later in life, this time, as a painful rash called shingles.
“Shingles can put a person’s life on hold. It can be extremely painful and can last for months,” says Canadian Skin Patient Alliance president Barbara-Anne Hodge. “Understanding the disease and who is most at risk in some cases can even prevent it.”