Laser Therapy and Herpes Zoster (Shingles)
Low Intensity Laser Therapy has an infinite ability to heal many musculoskeletal, dermatological and soft tissue injuries. Now shingles, another stubborn medical condition can be added to the list of treatable conditions.
Herpes in its many forms has a long list of conventional solutions none of which is without side effects.
- Analgesics for pain
- Antibiotics to treat secondary bacterial infections
- Topical Ointments
None of the above actually treats the virus itself but simply modulate symptoms.
The symptoms of shingles are:
- Patient feels extreme fatigue (may last 1 day to 2 weeks)
- Rash consisting of red spots followed by blisters
- Areas extremely sensitive to touch
- Only on one side of the body and following nerves
- In severe cases may cause blindness, facial paralysis and encephalitis
One of the worst complications is post herpetic neuralgia. The pain and tenderness continues long after the blisters have healed. Sometimes the pain is not relieved by conventional methods and can be excruciating.
In the U.S. over 1 million people develop shingles each year. Following an outbreak of the chickenpox, the virus lies dormant within the cells and neural pathways for years after the patient has had the original attack. Usually the virus is reactivated under stressful conditions. It is more common in the elderly but the younger age groups are not excluded.
Over the past 2 years we have successfully treated many cases of shingles with laser therapy. It is particularly helpful in preventing the post herpetic neuralgia problem. It is suggested that laser therapy is the treatment of choice in these situations.