Skip to content
Includes Expert Content
Shingles and Headaches
avatar
joewingy posted:
My father got shingles 3 years ago and suffered perminant nerve damage in his leg. Recently, he has started to experience intermittant severe headaches. He has had an MRV and MRI and neither showed anything abnormal. He is concerned that the shingles has spread to his brain. His headaches only occure when he is physically exherted, or he tilts his head forward. I have tried to find the symptoms that shingles can cause if it spreads to the brain, but have been unable to. I am wondering if this is possibly the cause, and if there is an article or web site that I can go to to read about the symptoms of shingles and the possible connection to his headache. Help!
Reply
 
avatar
DUKE MEDICINE
Timothy Collins, MD responded:
Shingles (Herpes Zoster Virus, same virus that causes chicken pox) can cause the rash on the head, and occasionally can affect the brain. BUT people with this virus affecting the brain are extremely sick, very confused or in a coma, and often have epileptic type seizures.

Your father's symptoms don't sound like Shingles. He is having a somewhat unusual type of headache. The MRI and MRV are very good at finding the serious causes of headache, like tumors, strokes, etc.

You should ask your doctor for a referral to a headache specialist.
 
avatar
joewingy replied to Timothy Collins, MD's response:
Thank you for your response Dr. Collins. The MRI and MRV showed nothing. We are supposed to go see a neurologist at the University of Virginia next Tuesday. I am not sure what tests they are going to run at this point, but I appreciate your input.
 
avatar
nhlisa replied to joewingy's response:
I realize this is 4 years old. But having suffered shingles that landed me in the hospital nearly 2 years ago, I can say that odd things do happen. I had seizures and continue to have seizures since being hospitalized with my outbreak. I now have chronic migraine, gastroparesis (from the shingles entering my stomach, yes it can go internal!) and still suffering seizures. I think with the recent increase (since kids started being inoculated) that things are happening that aren't expected. I have no reason for my medical situation now. Been told shingles doesn't cause these things, other than the gastric problems, but that is the only commonality I have. It's the starting point. I still struggle with my problems and am still seeking answers.
 
avatar
shinglezsuck replied to nhlisa's response:
Have you found anything out? Its 11/1/14 I just spent a week in the hospital with my wife. She has had Shingles for over 4 years now. A week ago she had terrible stomach pain. She said it felt like something was chewing her stomach. Then she began throwing up. Not regular. But like the worst convulsing puking I ever saw. Lots of bile. Took her to the ER they admitted her right away. Did every test they said they could including a lumbar puncture and couldn't find the reason for the migraine. Then I feel like its a nerve issue. Were you able to find any answers. My wife is only 35.


Helpful Tips

Migraines
laying down in a dark room always helps me. More
Was this Helpful?
6 of 6 found this helpful

Related News

There was an error with this newsfeed

Related Drug Reviews

  • Drug Name User Reviews

Report Problems With Your Medications to the FDA

FDAYou are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

For more information, visit the Duke Health Pain Disorders Center