Shingles: Chicken Pox Redux
The majority of Americans who are adults today had chicken pox when we were kids. And if you did, that means you might get shingles later in life. Shingles disease, also known as herpes zoster, is an acute infection of the nerve roots caused by varicella zoster--the same virus that gave you chicken pox as a youngster. There are about a million cases of shingles every year in the U.S., and about half of those occur in people over 60 years of age. In fact, one of every two people who live to age 85 or beyond will experience the joy of shingles at some time in their lives.