21,413 members25,122 posts


I had shingles in July of this year, and taking Methotrexate and Hydroxy for RA. i went to GP last week and have shingles yet again, the GP did not give me any antiviral tablets,but did last time. I dont understand how I have got shingles yet again in such a short space of time. I am suffering with such sharp pains in my head which is so painful. I am taking Tramadol at night but I cant function in the day if I take the Tramadol as it makes me sleepy and confused. Any comments to what else may help as I cant take cocodamol.

6 Replies

So sorry you have shingles again, I've had it twice, and sympathise, the pain is excruciating. I had dihydrocodeine, but if it's the codeine part of cocodamol that is the problem, that would be no use.

I was given diazepam at night short term to help me sleep, and ease the pain, I've also heard of amitripyline being used, but you would need to get any of these from your gp.

Hope you get some relief soon. M x


You have my sympathies. Can you get back to the GP and ask why you're not on anti-virals? If the pain is terrible (and it will be) you could ask for amitriptyline, it's well used to treat the pain associated with this disease.

Hope you feel better soon

S x


I do find this works but then people are different. Manuka essential oil. Ask the GP, as you are on many medications. I would never diagnose from a distance. Manuka has helped others but you do need a very thin layer and not neat from the bottle. As I have said do ask the GP before using.


Shingles can be very uncomfortable.if I remember( and it's more than 30years ago) the virus is not fully eliminated from the body and sits on a cranial nerve ganglia waiting to return,,which yours has done.before taking methotrexate I was tested to make sure I had had chicken pox and didn't need vaccinating . Anti virals work best when used at first symptoms So like with cold sore virus is best used at itchy stage before outbreak same with shingles but guidlines change as do medications.


Join the club! That happened to me also on MTX. I actually got shingles four times within three months. It was the flares that did it. However I've been getting shingles now for the past twenty years. I'm one of the lucky ones huh. I get it when I have severe pain, sever stress and other reasons. RA is severe pain. Luckily I haven't gotten it since I've been off MTX. I'm now on Enbrel and Celebrex. I haven't gotten shingles since. I've inly been diagnosed with RA since early June. I've gotten shingles prior since 1995 on average once a year. I got chicken pox late in life at the age of 25 in 1993. My doctor wanted me to get a shingles vaccine between my wait for Enbrel. I was but my insurance didn't cover it. I guess they will when I get 65 years old. Lol I wasn't paying 250 bucks out of pocket. Fingers crossed I haven't gotten it since July. Shingles is like punishment and so is RA. Both are the worse kind of pain you could ever experience. Good luck.


I recently had shingles without realising what it was. Had rash on face and slight headache. Visit to GP confirmed I had had shingles. I was due to take my Cimzia jab but was advised not to take it for time being. Prior to this was being treated for ulcer in the eye. We don't know whether the two were connected. However, apart from a couple of small scars all seems OK.

People surprised that I didn't find it painful but as I already take painkillers for RA think they masked the pain! Also so used to being in pain that didn't think anything of it! Amitripyline does help with sleep. Not allowed shingles jab as could cause more harm than good - something to do with how vacine is made. Wishing you a speedy recovery.


You may also like...