Herpes and shingles are very different diseases with different symptoms and ways of transmission. On the other hand, both diseases are caused by the herpes viruses. In this article, you will know the difference between these two diseases.
Several members of this virus can trigger disease but this article will focus on herpes simplex virus type 1 and type 2 and varicella-zoster virus. Herpes type 1 and type 2 cause herpes whereas the varicella-zoster virus causes chickenpox in kids and then shingles later in life.
Herpes and shingles are very common. Based on a survey, 90% of people in the United States have been exposed to HSV 1 and the CDC estimates that 32% of American will experience shingles at some point of their lives.
One of the most clinical properties of herpes simplex virus is its ability to develop a latent infection. Meaning to say, this virus can stay dormant inside the human body and will become reactivated in certain conditions, and show symptoms after the primary infection. This reactivation can be triggered by local injury, emotional stress, menstrual periods, sun light exposure, trauma, etc. On the other hand, the most prominent factor, especially to shingles outbreaks among adults is general age-related decline in the immune system known as immunosenescence.
Although modern treatment may treat the symptoms and shorten the duration of herpes and shingles attacks, many doctors disregard the potential therapeutic role of a heartburn drug known as cimetidine in dealing with herpes infections. Despite of the several published studies that have shown cimetidine significantly efficiently eases the symptoms of shingles and shorten the duration of outbreaks, the conventional medical establishment has failed to recommend this cheap treatment to adults suffering from this excruciating condition. Unfortunately, this is maybe because cimetidine has been off patent for numerous years and is no longer financed by pharmaceutical companies although it contains relief to patients suffering from shingles.