Chickenpox vaccine found to cause shingles in some children


A case study published in the journal Pediatric Dermatology looked at shingles cases that occurred in healthy children that were vaccinated for chickenpox. In the study, the authors looked at cases of shingles that were initially thought to be skin rashes.

  • The authors looked at seven cases of children who contracted herpes zoster (shingles) at the site of their varicella-zoster (chickenpox) vaccination.
  • The chickenpox virus is known to lay dormant in a person and can reactivate as shingles.
  • Symptoms included lesions, along with various kinds of skin abnormalities. Some children reported having a low-grade fever, while others had upper respiratory symptoms and joint pain.
  • The children underwent diagnostic tests, and all of them recovered from shingles without any complications.
  • The study underscored the value of recognizing the symptoms of shingles in immunized children.
  • According to Dr. Jennifer Huang, the study’s senior author from Boston Children’s Hospital, shingles in healthy immunized children are rare. However, incidences can be related to vaccination.
  • She also adds that understanding the relationship between shingles and vaccination may reduce the need for procedures or tests that are unnecessary.

The study underscored the outcomes of herpes zoster in vaccinated children, in particular, its clinical, diagnostic, and therapeutic effects.

Journal Reference:

Song H, Morley KW, Trowbridge RM, Butler DC, Liang MG, Gellis SE, Huang JT. HERPES ZOSTER AT THE VACCINATION SITE IN IMMUNIZED HEALTHY CHILDREN. Pediatric Dermatology. 2018 Feb 6. DOI: 10.1111/pde.13415

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