DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Shingles. Close-up of ulceration on the roof of the mouth (palate) of an 85-year-old man as a result of herpes zoster (shingles). Shingles is caused by the infection of sensory nerves with the varicella-zoster virus, which also causes chickenpox. It causes the outbreak of small blisters on the skin in the area supplied by the nerve. The blisters last around two weeks, and are followed by severe pain in the affected area. The pain is caused by nerve damage. Antiviral drugs are used to treat the condition and can help to prevent the pain if taken early in the attack. If drug treatment is delayed, there is no treatment.
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