Patient: Does having chicken pox mean that you will get shingles?
Symptoms: I had the vaccination for chicken pox as a baby, but I still got it. I’ve heard that those who have had chicken pox have the shingle virus inside of them already.
Doctor: Thank you for your question. This is a great question. Chicken pox and shingles are caused by the varicella zoster virus . When one is infected with the varicella zoster virus for the first time and develops chicken pox, this virus will remain in the body for life. It remains in a dormant state and can be reactivated at any given point in time. The reactivation of varicella zoster virus leads to a painful localized rash along a patch of skin called a dermatome. This is shingles. Now, being infected with chicken pox does not mean you will develop shingles, but there is a risk. This risk increases with as one gets older, or if the immune system is compromised. We hope this was informative.Thank you for consulting AskTheDoctor.com