Facebook Pixel

Can a Flu shot lead to Shingles?

By Expert HERWriter October 11, 2008 - 9:42pm
Rate This
flu shot

dear michelle, a 76 year old friend recently had a flu shot and developed a case of shingles. any connection? coincidental? thanxs so much


Has anyone ever heard of this or had this happen to them?


Add a Comment308 Comments

EmpowHER Guest

I just had the flu shot less than a week ago and now I have shingles. This is the first year I have had the flu shot. Now I wish I wouldn't have. :(

October 16, 2017 - 8:53pm
(reply to Anonymous)

I think the same thing is happening to me. I had a flu shot, encouraged by my PC Dr against my flu shot paranoia. I have been feeling increasingly worse these last few days, and I have a raised bumpy place on the back of my head. Dr gave me doxycycline last week because she thought it was an infected sebaceous cyst (I've never had a sebaceous cyst in my 52 years). Now this place on my head is extremely painful. Guess I'll go back to doctor again.

October 18, 2017 - 1:06pm
EmpowHER Guest

This is the best explanation I heard from another site. It makes perfect sense. I would be very wary of getting flu shot now due to having shingles.

Shingles are caused by the herpes virus.....usually acquired when one contracts
chicken pox. Shingles flare up and become active, usually in older people, when
their bodies are being stressed like from lack of sleep, poor diet or in this case
the immune system being challenged to cope with a new demand....the flu vaccine.

The vaccine itself did not cause the shingles outbreak....the outbreak is a response
to your body's immunes system responding...as intended...to the vaccine.

October 16, 2017 - 3:04pm
EmpowHER Guest

I got the flu shot a little over a week ago. I am obligated to have it for work. Three days ago I got Shingles. Seems to be related.

October 10, 2017 - 6:39pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

I got a flu shot last week after years of fighting against it. I'm a nursing student and was forced to get and now I have shingles! I believe it is related!

October 16, 2017 - 7:41am
EmpowHER Guest

Read through pages of comments and felt compelled to add my anecdotal evidence. Received a free flu shot, as I work in healthcare, and developed shingles approximately 10 days later accompanied by vertigo. I was 26 years old at the time and extremely healthy. I compete in Olympic-style weightlifting and monitor virtually every aspect of my health including diet, exercise, behavior, etc. This was my first flu shot and fist time getting shingles. Previously, I hadn't even had a cold for 4-5 years so I'm quite certain my immune system was not comprised. I have no family history of shingles.

I find the timely to be extremely suspicious.

October 9, 2017 - 1:40pm
EmpowHER Guest

After reading all the above, I am obliged to add my experience.
As a child I had chicken pox. I a 81 years old and very healthy. Work out at the gym every other day. I had a shingles vaccination two years ago. A little over two weeks ago I had the high dose flue shot. a few days ago I contracted shingles. Exactly two weeks after the flue shots! Not much doubt in my mind that the one caused the other! My Dermatologist has me on Valacyclovir pills, 3 a day for a week. Hope this benefits someone.

October 8, 2017 - 1:46pm
EmpowHER Guest

I had a high dose flu shot on 9/27/2017 and started itching two days later and the shingles rash appeared on 9/30/2017. I have had the flu shot for many years but this is the first year for the high dose one. I am convinced the shingles are from the high dose shot. I have had the shingles vaccine. No more high dose flu shots for me.

October 3, 2017 - 10:51am
EmpowHER Guest

I got flu shot by medical indication because Im pregnant and my doctor said I had to do it. Well after little more than a week I got the flu shot I started to have a rash on the right side of my lower back at first I thought it was mosquito bites but it got worst so I went to the dr and it was shingles. He told me it was not a reaction of the flu shot but Im not sure about it. And even when he said the virus and the treatment wount affect my baby, Im very worried about that

September 30, 2017 - 6:26am
EmpowHER Guest

I got my first and only flu shot in 1999 and 3 days later had a shingles outbreak. I have been dealing with chronic shingles since, by chronic every 6 to 8 weeks. I asked Dr if flu shot could be cause and his response was "no." I also ended up very sick just hours after the flu shot. I had no symptoms of an oncoming cold/flu as I usually do, it was like all symptoms hit me at once. I searched for a correlation for years. Now it seems this has been a problem for many years. I currently take 400 mg acyclovir daily to keep them at bay. My vaccine was administered by VA hospital.

September 10, 2017 - 11:43am
Enter the characters shown in the image.
By submitting this form, you agree to EmpowHER's terms of service and privacy policy
Add a Comment

All user-generated information on this site is the opinion of its author only and is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment for any medical conditions. Members and guests are responsible for their own posts and the potential consequences of those posts detailed in our Terms of Service.



Get Email Updates

Shingles Guide

Have a question? We're here to help. Ask the Community.


Health Newsletter

Receive the latest and greatest in women's health and wellness from EmpowHER - for free!