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Diagnosed with shingles. Taking aciclovir. Which medicine should I take to get relief from pain?

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I have been diagnosed with shingles from right groin down through my inner thigh, behind my knee, and halfway down my calf. I am on aciclovir 800mg 5 times daily for 7 days. The pain is incredible! The doctor told me to try calamine lotion. Can I use a TENS unit on the areas? is there any other form of pain relief I can try?
Posted Thu, 25 Apr 2013 in Infections
 
 
Answered by Dr. Pavan Kumar Gupta 5 hours later
Hello,

Thanks for the query.

I really feel bad for you because, as a doctor, I know how excruciating the shingles pain is.
Acute pain, as you are suffering, is different from chronic pain which generally is much more debilitating and persists beyond more than a month.

Since you are having this pain for just one week,it is labelled as acute pain and generally responds to treatment and is limited in duration.

You can take pain killers like OXYCODONE or OXYCONTIN or TRAMADOL for the pain relief. However these drugs should be taken only for short duration, since these are narcotic drugs and carry the risk of addiction.

Local ICING is a very good and effective method for relief of pain. You can do local ICING for 10 minutes at a time and 4 to 5 times a day.Once you start using local ice, you would find a wonderful response.

These methods should be enough to make you all right.

TENS is a good treatment for pain but is not used in acute cases and is used in chronic pains called as PHN (post herpetic neuralgia ).
There are various other treatment like local LIDODERM patches,anti convulsants,anti depressants, steroids etc., but mostly used in chronic pain only (PHN )

I hope it helps however you may revert to me for any further query.

Best of luck
Thanks
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
Follow-up: Diagnosed with shingles. Taking aciclovir. Which medicine should I take to get relief from pain? 22 minutes later
I have tramadol on hand and a tens unit. May I ask why you think it will only last week?
 
 
Answered by Dr. Pavan Kumar Gupta 13 minutes later
Hello,

I presumed you are suffering from pain for one week because you said in your query that you have shingles from 4 days.
You didn't mention for how many days you are suffering from pain.
If you are having the pain from past more than a month, you may use TENS.

Thanks
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
Follow-up: Diagnosed with shingles. Taking aciclovir. Which medicine should I take to get relief from pain? 18 hours later
Will I.M pethidine help reduce the pain?
 
 
Answered by Dr. Pavan Kumar Gupta 1 hour later
Hello,

Yes, it would definitely reduce the pain, but only if it is very terrible and excruciating.

In fact, you may use oral painkillers like OXYCODONE or TRAMADOL regularly for few days (taking them 3 to 4 times a day) along with local icing as suggested above.

Thanks
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
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