New cases of Shingles at two Northville schools

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Published: Jan 16, 2015

Few cases of Shingles have been reported by The Northville Public School district. Even families of students have been notified by sending messages regarding this disease.

Nurse consultant Marie Bocazor has sent out an email to Thornton Creek Elementary and Silver Spring Elementary families. The email stated that “This letter is to notify you that a case of shingles has been reported at (Thornton Creek and Silver Springs) and that your child may have been exposed.” Although the age of the persons involved were not given in the mail.

Shingles in children

According to Marie Boczar. Shingles occurs in the people who have had chickenpox and it is also known as Varicella. This disease is mainly found in older people and in the people with low immunity. It’s a well known fact that virus of chicken pox can stay in the body in the part of the nerve near spinal cord for a long time. When the person gets older, this virus becomes active again and causes a painful local rash along the path of the nerve. This rash is called shingles. Shingles is contagious because shingles is caused by the virus which becomes active again after several years. But people with shingles are able to spread chickenpox virus to other people around them because both shingles and chickenpox are caused by same virus. The virus usually spreads by contact with fluid from rash. This need to be avoided at all cost.

Boczar said that vaccines for shingles are now available, but they have different affects on different people. This vaccine protects those persons who have had the chickenpox and makes those people more susceptible who never had chickenpox in their lifetime. So the people who never had chickenpox should not take these vaccines. And there is more probability that those susceptible persons will develop chickenpox rather than shingles.

A fact sheet given by Oakland County Health department states that although shingles can occur at any age in those person who had chickenpox in their lifetime, but is mostly occurs in the people over the age of 50. Also people with low immunity are more likely to get shingles than the people with higher immunity, so older people and people with low immunity definitely need to be more aware of shingles. The symptoms of shingles include chills, fever and sometimes even upset stomach may occur three to four days before a rash. The rash and blisters generally occurs on the chest and waist area and it spreads in line-like pattern. The rash changes into vesicles which are fluid filled blisters just after one or two days of its occurrence, and after fifth day the vesicles starts to dry and scab. Sometimes the patient fills severe pain in the rash area because of the inflammation of the nerves.

The treatment for shingles includes antiviral drugs that may be ordered for people with immunity problems and pain relieving medications.

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