Skip to content
Includes Expert Content
Chicken Pox Vaccine
florajo posted:
I am a 57-yr old female and, if my memory serves, I had a chicken pox vaccination when I was around 13 years old. Will this protect me from shingles? (Also....was chicken pox vaccine around back then? I may be remembering incorrectly.)
Susan Evans, MD responded:
Dear florajo,

The chicken pox vaccine has only been available since 1995, so it is unlikely that the vaccination you remember was one for chicken pox.

Yes, it is possible to get shingles even if you have received the chicken pox vaccine, but the likelihood is greatly reduced.


Dr. Evans
mommeeya replied to Susan Evans, MD's response:
I am writing to you and replying to florajo. My son is 4 years old and was diagnosed with shingles on December 22nd. He had the chickenpox vaccine when advised. The Dr. explained that he must have contracted chickenpox prior to this shingles episode. I do remember a few times (2-4's)he came down with what I knew in my heart was chickenpox and I was immediately shot down, and they said no, just a rash and one time diagnosed with impetigo. It was a rash like right now but not as severe, on only one side of the body. If I can add, he always had a cold or some type of cold like symptoms. So if this is what we are in for, the poor kids that have had their shots for chickenpox may start developing shingles at very early ages. Sincerely, Karen Johnson
sararyan36 replied to mommeeya's response:
When my daughter was 9 mos old she got chicken pox. It was before I had her vaccinated. When she was 3 yrs old. She got shingles.

My daughter is now 12 yrs old and has some skin allergies. Could they all be linked somehow?
mrussell1988 replied to Susan Evans, MD's response:
My son just turned 2, and just got diagnosed with Shingles. I'm pretty sure he was vaccinated against chicken pox, and has never broken out in a rash like this before. He also has never had the chicken pox. It's all over his right leg and ankle. However, he is never in pain, and it doesn't itch or bother him other than when he can see it. Does this still seem like Shingles, and how can you get Shingles without having had active Chicken Pox?
Toad100 replied to Susan Evans, MD's response:
But I did have a vaccination for chicken pox, mumps and measles, and I have all of the foregoing conditions. I received the shots when I was approx. 5 yrs old. I am now 64. I also live in Canada-did this make a difference? Thank you for your anticipated response!
FatMomma1 replied to Toad100's response:
Hello, all. I am 32 years old now. But, at 2-3 months old I was exposed to chicken pox. At 5, I developed shingles. Throughout my childhood I had shingles about 6-8 times. I remember the blisters and the pain like it was yesterday. But, now, as an adult, I suffer from pain all over my body. I have tried everything from herbs to percocet. Percocet helped - kinda - but, in the long term it increased my pain and I am now - thankfully - off it. I am currently taking Neurontin, which is helping a lot, but not all the way. I have a lot of sharp, burning pains, especially in my ribs and abdomen in general. Many of my lymph nodes are painful and hard. I don't know how to handle this. When I bring it up, it's dismissed as Fibromyalgia. The meds they've tried for fibro have either caused severe side effects or allergic reactions. I also have Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, Narcolepsy, IBS, DDD, and Spinal Stenosis. My mom had Polio and Lupus. But, my recent Lupus test was negative. Any advise would be wonderful. It hurts so bad. I just want my life back.
Annie_WebMD_Staff replied to FatMomma1's response:
Hi FatMomma1,

We do have a few of communities that I think you will find helpful in dealing with pain problems.

WebMD Back Pain Community

WebMD Fibromyalgia Community

WebMD Pain Management Community .

In addition we do have other communities for help, please take a look at the main WebMD community page to find them.

You may also want to look up your medications by clicking on the Find a Drug link so that you can talk about them with your doctors.

- Annie
Take a look at the announcement area for links to the various WebMD skin related health centers!
madeline58 replied to mommeeya's response:
I just registered - I do not know which post I am replying to.
I thought I was just registering. Nevertheless, at age 82 now, I suspect that I have shingles but I had the shingles vaccine about 2 or 3 years ago. Is it possible that I still have shingles? I have what looks like welts between my breasts - mosquito bites in back of my neck (which have healed-I used Benadryl cream and then rubbed area with alcohol the next day as recommended by a friend) - edges of my ears are very itchy but have no rash-they're just red - I am itchy all over, even all of my head. Today is July 2nd so I can't see a doctor till Tuesday and was wondering if I should see my primary care doctor or my dermatologist where I am a regular patient because of skin cancer. Would appreciate hearing from Dr. Evans or someone.
kugirl11 replied to mrussell1988's response:
My son is 3 and we have the same scenario as you. Never had chicken pox, only the vaccination. I have the same questions as you!

Featuring Experts

Mohiba K Tareen, MD is a board certified dermatologist who has an innovative practice in Roseville, Minnesota. Tareen Dermatology ( www.TareenDermato...More

Helpful Tips

Treatment for StingsExpert
Keep a container of meat tenderizer by the kitchen sink. If someone gets stung, make a quick paste by putting some of the meat tenderizer ... More
Was this Helpful?
5 of 7 found this helpful

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.