April 17, 2023 /Healthcare/ — There is no evidence that the COVID-19 vaccine causes shingles. However, there is some evidence that the COVID-19 vaccine may trigger shingles in people who are already at risk for the condition. Shingles is caused by the varicella-zoster virus, the same virus that causes chickenpox. Once a person has had chickenpox, the virus remains dormant in the body. It can reactivate later in life, causing shingles.
There are a number of factors that can increase the risk of shingles, including:
- Age: The risk of shingles increases with age.
- Stress: Stress can trigger a shingles outbreak.
- Immunocompromised state: People who are immunocompromised, such as those with cancer or HIV, are at increased risk for shingles.
The COVID-19 vaccine can cause a temporary drop in the number of white blood cells, which are cells that help the body fight infection. This drop in white blood cells can increase the risk of shingles in people who are already at risk for the condition.
If you have had chickenpox, it is important to talk to your doctor about your risk for shingles. You may be eligible for the shingles vaccine, which can help protect you from getting shingles.