There is one vaccine, Shingrix, which is very effective in preventing shingles postherpetic neuralgia. This vaccine prevents shingles in 97% of people age 50-69 years and 91% of people age 70 or older. It is also highly effective against postherpetic neuralgia and protects 91% of people age 50 or older from this complication. The vaccine is a series of two doses, separated by 2 to 6 months.
Who should get shingles vaccine?
Shingrix is a recommended vaccine for all adults age 50 years and older. In addition, everyone 19 years and older who have a weak immune system are now recommended to get Shingrix. Please talk with your primary care provider to see if you are eligible to get Shingrix. You can get this vaccine even if you have had shingles, previously received varicella (chickenpox) vaccine or if you don't know if you have had chickenpox in the past.
You can get a shingles vaccine if you have a minor illness, such as a cold. But if you are severely ill or have a temperature above 101.3 degrees, wait until you recover before getting shingles vaccine.
Who should not get shingles vaccine?
You should not get Shingrix if you:
- Have ever had a severe allergic reaction to it or to any ingredient in it
- Currently have shingles
- You may consider waiting to get Shingrix if you are pregnant or breastfeeding
Vaccine Information Statement
- Zoster (Recombinant Shingles) (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
- What everyone should know about shingles vaccine (Shingrix) (CDC)
- Shingles (Zoster): Questions and Answers (PDF) (Immunization Action Coalition)
- Recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices for Use of Herpes Zoster Vaccines (PDF) (CDC