This is part 2 of a discussion with Craig McKnight, vice president of MediNurse in St. Louis. Yesterday, McKnight talked about managing health assessments. Today, McKnight is going into detail about the growing risk of Shingles with an aging population.
Shingles is showing up in the over-60 age group with increasing frequency, validating the fact nearly one out of three people in America will develop shingles during their lifetime.
This is what McKnight had to say about Shingles and the best prevention care:
Ladue-Frontenac Patch: Lets talk about Shingles vaccinations and how one goes about getting it.
Craig McKnight: Its always been a prevalent thing but its never been talked about until now. It is recommended for people 55 years and older to get the shot. Getting the Shingles is horrible. If you have already had Shingles, the shot will do you no good.
There are typically two million people who are diagnosed with it, and suffer from the after effects every year.
Patch: What are the telltale signs.
McKnight: You often feel the pain, often before you get the rash. It looks just like Chicken Pox. It will appear as blisters and it is red and itchy. For some people who develop Shingles on their back, it is so painful, it hurts every time it touches their shirt. Many end up with post traumatic neuralgia nerve pain. It can linger for months or years.
Patch: What exactly is Shingles.
McKnight: It is something that effects the nerve endings. It just causes absolute burning, stinging pain. Sometimes it feels like being stabbed with needles.
Patch: What is the treatment.
McKnight: There really isn’t any treatment out there, other than some medications to take help with the nerve pain.
Patch: Where do people go to get the shot.
McKnight: They can call our office at 314-781-2800 and we can set it up.
Patch: Still, the price of the shot remains high.
McKnight: Yes, its $225 for the shot but one shot is good for a lifetime. Once you’ve gotten it, you are good. It does not guarantee you will not get Shingles, but it does prevent it in many cases. If you happen to get Shingles (after the shot) it can make it lot less painful.
Patch: If you had Chicken Pox as a child should you get the shot.
McKnight: By all means. Then you are a candidate to get Shingles. One out of three Americans will get Shingles sometime, and that’s a very high rate. The prevalence in 65 and older is six times more likely to develop it.
Even today, people in their 20s, 30s and 40s are getting it. Below age 55, each person just has to take their own risk. If you are younger, then you need to talk to your doctor first.
Once you’ve had Shingles, the shot does no good.
Patch: How are you creating awareness of this.
McKnight: We do seminars for companies. We work with doctors offices and hospitals all the time. This is a learning experience for everyone with different things coming out all the time.
Next year, there will be an extra strain of flu so there will be a new shot coming out.
Patch: How do people reach you.
McKnight: We are located at 12852 Manchester, Suite B. Phone (314) 781-2800.