Is There a Link Between Shingles and Erectile Dysfunction?

Shingles, caused by the same virus responsible for chickenpox, can play havoc with the nervous system. Among its neurological effects can be a loss of sensation in the penis, resulting in temporary erectile dysfunction.

If you’ve experienced shingles, you probably know that it’s quite painful because the virus affects a particular area of nerves — usually a band on the left or right side of your torso.

If you’ve never had shingles, here are a few things to watch for:

  • a burning sensation, pain or tingling
  • itching
  • a red rash that begins some time after the pain starts
  • blisters that break open, ooze fluid, and crust over

Some people also experience sensitivity to light, a fever, a headache, and/or fatigue.

Who Can Get Shingles?

People who have had chickenpox can get shingles, both of which are caused by the varicella-zoster virus, or VZV. That’s because even after the symptoms of chickenpox go away, the virus can lie dormant in your nervous system for years—even decades. Not everyone who had chickenpox will get shingles though.

Although shingles is much more common in older people, younger people can get it too.

Shingles are contagious, but only to people who aren’t immune to chickenpox. This includes people who have never had chickenpox and those who haven’t been vaccinated for chickenpox. Typically passing on shingles to someone else requires direct contact with the blisters.

Losing Sensation in Your Penis

In addition, your rear and genitals may become numb for some of the time you’re experiencing an active outbreak of the shingles.

Obviously, numbing of the penis isn’t going to help you get an erection, so don’t feel bad if you get erectile dysfunction. Besides, who wants to have sex when they’re in pain?

Gradually, the penile nerves will return to normal and once again begin to feel sensation. It can take several weeks to heal, but as long as you didn’t have erectile dysfunction before the shingles, you probably won’t have erectile dysfunction after it goes away. (And if you do experience some temporary erectile dysfunction, you can always get a prescription for Viagra, Cialis, or Levitra until your body gets back to normal.)

Which Drugs Increase My Risk?

If you’re taking immunosuppresant drugs to prevent your body from rejecting transplanted organs, or if you’ve been on steroids such as prednisone for a long time, your risk of developing shingles may be increased. But talk to your doctor before you stop taking any medications.

If you’d like to take an ED drug such as Viagra to overcome temporary ED symptoms associated with a shingles outbreak or an antiviral drug to relieve the discomfort of shingles, longtime online facilitator eDrugstore.com has got you covered. Based in Tempe, Arizona, eDrugstore has been in business since the late 1990s. It supplies a limited selection of lifestyle medications, including a full range of ED drugs as well as acyclovir and Valtrex, antivirals that can help you through the shingles outbreak. To learn more, visit eDrugstore’s homepage.

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