Prostherpetic neuralgia Resources

10 August 2018

Shingles is a painful and debilitating disease which disproportionately affects older adults. Despite an effective vaccine, the use of which has reduced cases of shingles and the subsequent complication of postherpetic neuralgia, many eligible older adults are not receiving the vaccine. Uptake is lower than would be hoped for and has declined each year since the programme was introduced in 2013. This year, efforts are being made to reinvigorate interest in the vaccination programme and to provide supporting literature and information. General practice nurses (GPNs) are instrumental in advising patients about vaccination and will deliver the majority of vaccines. This article provides an overview of the disease, its cause, the role of immunity, risk and incidence, disease course, treatment, prevention and how to improve uptake by employing best practice initiatives. GPNs can use this information to advocate shingle vaccination and improve uptake and protection for the vulnerable older adults in the population.