Dermatologists located in Bluefield, Radford and Wytheville, VA and Beckley, Princeton and Oak Hill, WV


Shingles causes a painful rash that can appear anywhere on your body, but often wraps around the torso. At Derm One, with offices in Bluefield, Radford, and Wytheville, Virginia, as well as Beckley, Princeton, and Oak Hills, West Virginia, the professional dermatology team can diagnose, treat, and prevent this viral infection. If you suspect you have shingles, call today or use the online tool to book an appointment. 

What is shingles?

Shingles, also known as herpes zoster, is a viral infection caused by the varicella-zoster virus – the same virus that causes chickenpox. If you’ve recovered from chickenpox, the virus can remain dormant in the nerve tissues and re-emerge later in life as shingles.

What are the symptoms of shingles?

Shingles typically presents with a painful, blistering rash that usually develops on one side of the body. This ratch itches, burns, and is sensitive to touch. Before the rash develops, you may experience flu-like symptoms, such as fever and fatigue.

Who is at risk of developing shingles?

Anyone who has had chickenpox is at risk of developing shingles. Some people who have had the chickenpox vaccine are also susceptible. The risk increases with age, and if you have a weakened immune system, you may be even more susceptible.

Is shingles contagious?

Shingles isn’t contagious, but the virus can be transmitted to someone who has not had chickenpox or the chickenpox vaccine. In these cases, the person who catches the virus may develop chickenpox – not shingles. 

How do you diagnose shingles?

The team at Derm One can diagnose shingles after evaluating the characteristic rash and symptoms. If your diagnosis isn’t clear, your provider may take a sample from the affected area to confirm the presence of the varicella-zoster virus.

How do you treat shingles?

The dermatology team at Derm One commonly prescribes antiviral medications, such as acyclovir, valacyclovir, or famciclovir, to reduce the severity and duration of symptoms. They may also recommend pain relievers and topical creams to ease symptoms.


The rash typically lasts two to four weeks. Pain can persist even after the rash has cleared – a condition known as postherpetic neuralgia. Seek prompt medical attention when you notice the first signs of shingles so you can start antiviral treatment early and reduce the severity of your symptoms. 

Can shingles be prevented?

Vaccination is the most effective way to prevent shingles. The team at Derm One recommends the shingles vaccine for individuals aged 50 and older. It not only reduces the risk of developing shingles but also decreases the severity of symptoms in those who do get the virus.

Call Derm One today or use the online tool to schedule your appointment and be evaluated for shingles.