It estimated that less than 2 out of 10 Americans aged 60 and older are getting vaccinated against shingles. Efforts for recommended innoculation are being increased in the US.
Merck’s shingles vaccine Zostavax is recommended for all people aged 60 and older, and in 2011 was cleared for usage in all those 50 and older. Shingles becomes more prevalent with age, 1 in 3 people will get shingles in their lifetime. It is caused by the same virus as chicken pox and is characterized by a painful rash with fever, stomach ache and chills. Lasting side effects include postherpatic neuralgia which consists of a burning nerve pain that can last for years.
The Zostavax vaccine protects against the occurrence of shingles and the pain associated with it. Anyone aged 50 and older should discuss with their health care provider when they should be receiving the vaccine.
Research has showed that receiving the vaccine at a younger age (age 50) helps reduce the risk of shingles by 70 %.
The vaccine is readily available at the Nova Travel Clinic. For more information on the shingles vaccine please see our page on Zostavax.