Patient Comments: Chickenpox - Adult Experience

Please describe your experience with being infected with chickenpox as an adult.

Comment from: evergreenkidd, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: April 24

I wanted to share my adult chicken pox experience here, since I went through it recently and this site brought me some relief hearing from others. I thought I had chicken pox as a child. I was wrong, and I got it at age 33. I experienced at least a week of malaise and tiredness. By the 5th day of feeling this way I went to the doctor who checked me for Lyme's disease and mononucleosis. By the 6th day I had an incredible fever, and I started noticing small, fluid-filled blisters all over my body. By the 7th day I was covered in blisters that turned from fluid-filled and clear to red. I went to the doctor who told he was unconvinced of my self-diagnosis of chicken pox and told me to see a dermatologist. I went to the doctor again on day 8 because the rash got worse, and they were finally convinced I had chicken pox. I wish that they had believed me because I could have started Valtrex sooner. Not only was the rash uncomfortable, it was painful. I felt like I had pins and needles all over my body, but instead of numbness it felt like electricity. I will never forget this pain. If you are an adult and get chicken pox, you may experience a similar neuropathy. After 2 days of excruciating pain, my blisters finally began to just itch. My fever lasted for 5 days straight. I would take ibuprofen to lower it, and when it would wear off it would jump back up and hover around 101 to 103. I also experienced pressure on my optic nerve and some double vision. I also had abdominal pain. The combination of chicken pox and taking Valtrex plus ibuprofen also made my liver enzymes elevate slightly. My entire experience took 14 days to run its course. I spent about 10 of those days literally bed ridden with no energy, fever, and pain. It was the worst experience I had in my life. My parents said I developed a fever and rash when I was a child and wrote it off as chicken pox, but my doctor confirmed I had no pre-existing antibodies to it. Please get vaccinated if you have any doubt in your mind if you had chicken pox. It was an excruciating experience.

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Comment from: lisa, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: March 01

It took several visits to my doctor and lab tests as I was getting very sick with lower abdominal pain that pierced through my side and I was then unable to stand or walk. Every time I would start to get a flare up I would get very bad diarrhea and my stomach would make the loudest bubbling sounds I have ever heard it make. My main doctor failed at finding what was wrong with me. I then started to notice the signs and started going to the emergency room. My first visit the doctor was very concerned and had me do several different tests, MRI, CT scan, etc. With the results in he told me I have diverticulitis and as I was getting sick many times in the last year he said it was most likely really bad and ordered me a colonoscopy. Mind you, at this time I was 36 years old and I am now 40. For 2 1/2 years I was sick twice or more times a month. After having the colonoscopy the surgeon went over the results with me and told me I have a severe case and need more than a foot of my colon removed. I have not scheduled a surgery because I can't afford it. I manage to get by with avoiding seeds except tomatoes. I haven't cut them out at all and sometimes it makes me have a flare up but mostly I am fine. Certain foods set it off like any buffets, and the worst for me are fried foods. I have noticed that a few people I have met who have it eat foods that I can't and vice versa so I think it just depends on the person. It really is hard to be sick all the time.

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Comment from: BEN, 25-34 Male (Patient) Published: January 19

I am a 26 year old male. My girlfriend's family came over for Christmas and her little nephew developed chicken pox. I was unaware if I had the disease as a child but I was soon to find this out. It has been around 3 weeks since contact with the baby. I started with flu like symptoms and a terrible fever. It is now day 4 and I am covered in spots all over my body my face and hair being affected worst. I am using calamine lotion but my mouth feel extremely painful. I just want this to be over.

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Chickenpox - Side Effects From Vaccine Question: Did your child experience any side effects from the chickenpox vaccine?
Chickenpox - Symptoms and Signs Question: How did you first notice you or your child was infected with chickenpox?
Chickenpox - Treatment Question: What did your doctor recommend to treat chickenpox?
Chickenpox - Complications Question: Did you or your child experience complications from chickenpox? If so, what happened?

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