Shingles and Pregnancy - Prevention

How did you prevent the risk of shingles during your pregnancy?

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Can shingles in pregnancy be prevented?

If you have had chickenpox in the past, you have been infected with the VZV and there is no absolute way to prevent shingles. However, you cannot catch shingles from someone else that has shingles or chickenpox if you have had chickenpox or have immunity to the chickenpox virus. However, pregnant women who have not had chickenpox may catch chickenpox from someone with shingles or chickenpox. Chickenpox infection during pregnancy can be dangerous to the unborn baby, so it is important to avoid contact with people with shingles or chickenpox if you have not had the condition or the vaccine.

Children in the US today are typically vaccinated against the VZV (chickenpox vaccine). A vaccine to prevent shingles (Zostavax) is also available that reduces the incidence of shingles by about 50%, but the vaccine cannot be taken by pregnant women. Women who receive the Zostavax vaccine should wait at least 3 months before attempting pregnancy.

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