Varicella-Zoster Virus (VZV) Questions & Answers

Updated: Oct 01, 2021
  • Author: Zartash Zafar Khan, MD, FACP; Chief Editor: Pranatharthi Haran Chandrasekar, MBBS, MD  more...
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Questions & Answers

Overview

What is the varicella-zoster virus (VZV)?

What are the symptoms of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

What are the signs and symptoms of herpes zoster (shingles)?

What are the signs and symptoms of zoster multiplex?

What are the signs and symptoms of zoster sine herpete?

What is the central nervous system (CNS) involvement in varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

What is Ramsay-Hunt syndrome?

What is herpes zoster ophthalmicus (HZO)?

How is varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection diagnosed?

What is the basis for selection of treatment for varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

How are antiviral medications used in the treatment of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

In which high-risk groups is varicella zoster immune globulin (VariZIG) indicated after exposure to varicella-zoster virus (VZV)?

Which disorders are caused by varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

How common are severe complications of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

How does varicella-zoster virus (VZV) reactivate after primary infection?

What is the pathophysiology of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

What is the frequency of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection in the US?

What is the global frequency of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

What are possible complications of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

How does the presentation of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection differ among races?

Does varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection occur more often in males or females?

How does age affect risk of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

Presentation

What are the typical initial symptoms of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

Which physical findings suggest herpes zoster (shingles)?

Which physical findings suggest zoster multiplex?

Which physical findings suggest zoster sine herpete?

Which physical findings suggest central nervous system (CNS) complications of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

Which physical findings suggest Ramsay-Hunt syndrome?

Which physical findings suggest herpes zoster ophthalmicus (HZO)?

How does immunosuppression affect varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

DDX

What are the differential diagnoses for Varicella-Zoster Virus (VZV)?

Workup

What is the role of lab testing in the diagnosis of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

What is the role of imaging studies in the diagnosis of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

Which procedures may be useful in the diagnosis of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

Which histologic findings suggest varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

Treatment

What is the basis for selection of treatment for varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

Are antiviral medications effective in the treatment of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

Which medications are used to treat varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

What are the CDC recommendations for the use of varicella-zoster immune globulin (VariZIG) in the treatment of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

Are oxycodone and gabapentin effective in the treatment of herpes zoster (shingles) pain?

When is surgical care indicated for varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

When are specialist consultations indicated in the treatment of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

What are the CDC recommendations regarding immunization schedules for zoster vaccines in adults?

Medications

What are the goals of pharmacotherapy for varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection?

Which medications in the drug class Antiviral agents are used in the treatment of Varicella-Zoster Virus (VZV)?

Which medications in the drug class Varicella Vaccines are used in the treatment of Varicella-Zoster Virus (VZV)?

Which medications in the drug class Zoster Vaccines are used in the treatment of Varicella-Zoster Virus (VZV)?

Which medications in the drug class Topical Analgesics are used in the treatment of Varicella-Zoster Virus (VZV)?

Which medications in the drug class Immune Globulins are used in the treatment of Varicella-Zoster Virus (VZV)?