A new study has connected shingles to increased rates of acute cardiovascular events such as ischemic stroke. The same research, from the Mayo Clinic, has drawn a connection between developing shingles and asthma.
Shingles (caused by the virus herpes zoster) is a disease characterized by a painful skin rash with blisters. Symptoms include a burning rash, together with headache, fever, and malaise.
Moreover, research indicates that childhood asthma to be linked to higher risk of developing shingles as an adult. This was derived at after a review of medical records from adults aged 50 and over from Olmsted County, Minnesota. These data were cross-referenced with the frequency of asthma in people diagnosed with shingles.
It was found that the mean (average) age of the patients with shingles was 67 years. Using logistic regression, the researchers calculated that adults who had asthma had a 70% higher risk of developing shingles as compared with those without asthma.
The inference from this study is that older adults with asthma should consider being immunized against shingles by vaccination.
Speaking with Medline, Dr. Young Juhn, a general academic pediatrician and asthma epidemiologist at the Mayo Clinic Children's Research Center, noted: “As asthma is an unrecognized risk factor for zoster [shingles] in adults, consideration should be given to immunizing adults aged 50 years and older with asthma or atopic dermatitis as a target group for zoster [shingles] vaccination.”
Posted by Dr. Tim Sandle