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Shingles or Insect Bite?
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Shingles or Insect Bite?

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Two nights ago I was in bed and I noticed that my side (side of my chest below my right breast) was itchy. I didn't think much of it; I just figured it was an insect bite. Yesterday my side was quite itchy again, and when I looked at the area it was much worse than I expected. I had 3, very red, raised  linear bumps and the surrounding skin was red as well. The middle of each bump had a tiny bit of puss in it. This morning I noticed that the rash surrounding the bumps had spread so I saw a doctor who diagnosed me with shingles.

Now, I have had my fair share of bug bites; I am incredibly prone to them. My skin is very sensitive to bites and I know how my body reacts when I am bitten. The bites always turn red and always develop puss in the centers. The only thing different about what I have now is that there is a surrounding rash and the itch is more intense; and I will admit that I have scratched, which may or may not explain some things.

I have had shingles in the past, when I was about 8-9 years old, and what I have now does not feel at all similar to what I had then. I am now 20. I did not experience any pain prior to developing the bumps & rash; the only discomfort I have is an extreme itch. I did not have a fever either. The bumps, along with the tiny puss in the center, was present before the surrounding rash developed. My mother also has the same rash in a similar area, though she noticed hers about 2 weeks ago and hers are fading.

I have been prescribed Acyclovir for the shingles, though I am not 100% confident in the diagnosis.

Thank you for your help.
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5 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar_f_tn
When I get bug bites, I have to watch for the same thing.  It has been diagnosed as cellulitis (inflamation (inflammation) of the skin cells)  It is just like you describe -- the center of the bite gets pus in it.  I also find that the red, inflamed area is very hot as well.
I am usually given antibiotics and that does the trick.'
Good luck!
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Avatar_dr_f_tn
Hi,

Shingles is a reactivation of the herpes zoster virus that also causes the childhood illness chickenpox. The first symptom of shingles is often extreme sensitivity or pain in a broad band on one side of the body. Typically, 1-3 days after the pain starts, a rash with raised, red bumps and blisters erupts on the skin in the same distribution as the pain. The rash disappears as the scabs fall off in the next 2-3 weeks, and scarring may result.

If this is the case, you should see your doctor as soon as possible, because antiviral medication is effective only if given early. It is important that you avoid scratching the lesions. Antihistamines can relieve the itching and pain medications for the pain, if present. Drink plenty of fluids and rest.

Take care and keep us posted.
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Avatar_f_tn
My mother has had shingles before I am concerned cause i woke up one morning with a rash on my right side of my neck and the pain started midday and continued to get worse until i was in tears and no noticeable bumps were present at all just pain in my neck
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Avatar_m_tn
I know the thread is old, but i am curious did it turn out to be a shingles or a bug bite?  I am dealing with a similar situation now.  thanks.
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Avatar_f_tn
hey I have a pain shooting in my neck to , I thought I might have got bitten by a spider .
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