Managing Herpes Zoster and Postherpetic Neuralgia
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.
Pharmacotherapy for herpes zoster should accelerate healing and reduce the severity and duration of associated pain. Postherpetic neuralgia (PHN) is defined along a continuum of pain—whether acute or chronic—and is measured from the onset of infection until final resolution.
Reducing the risk for complications is also important. Treatment strategies for zoster infection include limiting viral replication with antiviral agents and limiting acute and chronic pain with a variety of analgesics
Journal of the American Osteopathic Association
6 suppl 2
Galluzzi, Katherine E., "Managing Herpes Zoster and Postherpetic Neuralgia" (2009). PCOM Scholarly Papers. 34.