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Findings from a survey about shingles/PHN.

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The American Pain Foundation (APF) announced today at the American Pain Society (APS) Annual Meeting the results of a national survey that showed postherpetic neuralgia (PHN), also known as after-shingles pain, continues to be a condition with low awareness amongst Americans, demonstrating a need for health care provider (HCP) intervention. … The condition affects approximately 1 million people in the United States every year, and one in five of those who suffer may go on to develop PHN, which results from nerve damage caused by the shingles rash. For some, the PHN pain can become so severe that it significantly impacts quality of life. PHN is one of the most common causes of pain-related suicide in older Americans.

Key findings from the 414 people surveyed who have had shingles include:

A Lack of Education and Communication about PHN

  • While nearly 60 percent of respondents said their physician mentioned  burning, aching, sharp or itching pain in relation to their shingles outbreak, only one-third reported being told by an HCP about the possibility of developing PHN
  • Of the survey respondents who first experienced after-shingles pain, almost half (42 percent) did not think that it was related to their shingles rash in any way

The Prevalence of PHN

  • Fifty-one percent of survey respondents reported experiencing pain, shortly after or within months, after their shingles rash went away
  • Among respondents who experienced PHN, 16 percent reported that after-shingles pain lasted for 15 weeks or more
  • More than half of respondents said the pain they experienced after having shingles was more frustrating than actually having shingles

Treatment Option Preferences

  • More than 70 percent of respondents were interested in using a topical treatment, alone or in combination, to relieve after-shingles pain

[Source]

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Written by tldegray

May 13, 2010 at 9:02 pm

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