Rheumatoid Arthritis Raises Risk for Shingles

People with inflammatory arthritis should get the shingles vaccine, but timing is important.

If you had chickenpox as a child, and most people born before the vaccine was available in 1995 did, the virus (varicella zoster) is still in your body, waiting to reawaken later in life as shingles. One out of every three adults gets shingles. The rate of getting shingles increases with age, says Cleveland Clinic rheumatologist and infectious disease specialist Leonard Calabrese, DO. And people with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), psoriatic arthritis (PsA) or ankylosing spondylitis (AS) are twice as likely to get shingles as the general population.
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