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FAQ

What is shingles?

Page last updated 19 January 2022

Shingles (also known as herpes zoster), is a disease caused by the virus varicella zoster, which is the same virus that causes chickenpox – this means that it is impossible to contract shingles if you have never contracted chickenpox or have never been exposed to the varicella zoster virus before. 
 

After the initial infection (i.e. chickenpox), the virus lays dormant in the nervous system, but can manifest later as shingles. 

Sources & Citations

1. Australian Government Department of Health. Shingles (herpes zoster). Available at: https://www.health.gov.au/health-topics/shingles-herpes-zoster (accessed 08 December 2021).

3. National Centre for Immunisation Research & Surveillance. Herpes zoster factsheet. Available at: http://www.ncirs.org.au/sites/default/files/2018-12/zoster-vaccine-fact-sheet.pdf (accessed 08 December 2021).

4. Australian Government Department of Health. The Australian Immunisation Handbook. Zoster (herpes zoster). Available at: https://immunisationhandbook.health.gov.au/vaccine-preventable-diseases/zoster-herpes-zoster (accessed 08 December 2021).

 

MAT-AU-2102487  Date of preparation January 2022

 

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