Postherpetic Neuralgia

Srinivasa N. Raja, Ronen Shechter and Raimy Amasha

in Pain Medicine

Published on behalf of Oxford University Press

Published in print April 2015 | ISBN: 9780199931484
Published online July 2015 | e-ISBN: 9780199390823 | DOI:
Postherpetic Neuralgia

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  • Pain Medicine
  • Anaesthetics
  • Neurology


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This chapter presents a clinical case of an acute herpes zoster (HZ) or shingles attack. HZ is a disease state caused by the varicella-zoster virus (VZV) when the virus is reactivated from a dormant sensory ganglion years later. The most common neurologic complication of VZV reactivation is postherpetic neuralgia (PHN). The chapter discusses the natural history, incidences, and prevalence of PHN, as well as its painful manifestations. The chapter provides a review of both effective and ineffective pharmacologic, interventional, surgical, integrative, and psychosocial treatment options for the various phases of HZ and PHN. A discussion of the prevention of varicella zoster reactivation and a summary of the mechanisms of postherpetic neuralgia pain concludes the chapter.

Chapter.  16999 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Pain Medicine ; Anaesthetics ; Neurology

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