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SHINGLES?
Apr 13, 2008

Hi Doc,

You truly are an amazing human being and I find your sense of humuor very amusing. Thanks for all the wonderful work that you do, and may GOD bless you. My question is, I was diagnosed with HIV 5 years ago, and I keep on getting this little red pimple that grows into something like tiny pimples with water inside, and it dries up in a couple of days and it's very itchy. I've read somewhere that its shingles is it possible that my immune system is compromised every time I have an occurrence?

Take care African Lady

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hey African Lady,

It's always difficult to diagnose any kind of rash over the Internet, as I am unable to visually examine the area in question. What you describe does not sound like shingles (herpes zoster). However, it may be a herpes simplex infection. These periodic eruptions do not indicate your immune system is compromised every time they erupt. In fact they can erupt frequently in folks with completely normal immune systems. I'd suggest you show your rash to a dermatologist the next time it pops up. He may well be able to accurately diagnose the condition just by examining it. Alternatively he may send a culture. If it is recurrent herpes simplex (my best bet), he may want you to take a medication that suppresses the herpes virus to reduce the frequency and severity of the outbreaks.

Good luck. Thanks for your kind comments and for reading the forum. By the way, you must have one twisted sense of humor to appreciate my often wise-assed remarks! I like that in a lady (or gent!).

Be well.

Dr. Bob



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