Shingles vaccine now available to older adults

TODAY, 26 June 2013

A vaccine for shingles, Zostavax, is now available to older adults aged 50 and above in Singapore.
A person who has had chickenpox is at risk of shingles, a disease caused by a reactivation of the same varicella zoster virus.

About 95 per cent of adults over the age of 50 are at risk of shingles as they would have been infected with chickenpox earlier in their lives. Older adults are also at a higher risk of getting more severe complications from the disease.

Dr Leong Hoe Nam of the Rophi Clinic said the vaccine works by preventing a reactivation of the virus already in the body.

The vaccine, which is administered as a single injection, costs about S$220 to S$250 at general practitioner clinics, specialist clinics and selected hospitals.

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