Soon after the death of the television actor Sanjit Bedi (better known for his role as Dr Omi in Sanjivani) due to viral infection shingles in Marine Lines’s Bombay Hospital on Tuesday, city doctors have warned of deadly virus and issued some preventive guidelines.
While explaining, Dr Om Shrivastav, an infectious disease consultant said that Shingles–also know as herpes zoster, is caused by herpes viridae family. It is the same virus family which is responsible for causing chicken pox, said Shrivastav. He further added that in Shingles, painful blisters and rashes occurs on one side of the body, along with acute chest pain which also gives burning sensation. Also, blisters turn into small sores and then these sores take nearly 2-3 week time to gradually dry and from crust. Then the crust falls off without leaving any scar.
Once a person gets infected by the chicken pox virus, the virus goes in deep slumber or hibernation mode in the nerve root. However, in some people the virus reactivates itself a year later and causes Shingles. Scientists say that only in 15 percent cases the virus reactivates and they still don’t know the exact cause behind the virus reactivating itself.
However, Dr. Shrivastav said that poor immunity might be the prime reason that causes dormant virus to wake up as at that time it is easy to bypass white blood cells that plays important role in cell-mediated immunity.
Doctors warned the people suffering from HIV, diabetes and who had previously developed chicken pox as they have higher chances of getting infected with Shingles. Also, people older than 50 years should be careful in case of an outbreak.
Moreover, it is always advisable to visit your doctors in case of an outbreak or if any early signs are detected. Dr. Shrivatav added that it is always better to treat the disease in early stages and restrict it from going in later stages.