Managing herpes zoster and postherpetic neuralgia

Katherine E. Galluzzi, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine

This article was published in Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, Volume 109, Issue 6 SUPPL. 2, Pages S7-S12.

The published version is available at

Copyright © 2009.


Treatment strategies for herpes zoster infection include limiting viral replication with anti-infective agents as well as limiting associated acute and chronic neuropathic pain with a variety of analgesics. The author outlines currently available pharmacotherapeutic options, from first-line (eg, anti-infective agents, tricyclic antidepressants, anticonvulsants, opioid analgesics, and topical agents) through adjuvant treatments (eg, oral corticosteroids). A summary of adverse event profiles is provided for each medication. Vaccination is recommended as a preventive measure.