I have known Linda for about seven years now, treating her for Hashimotos’ thyroid disease. Linda has other problems. She takes daily acyclovir for recurrent attacks of oral-facial herpes simplex which can be quite debilitating. Recently, we were chatting and Linda brought up the idea of Shingles vaccination to prevent the oral-facial herpes attacks.
I immediately volunteered my opinion that this is a bad idea. This is a Chickenpox vaccine, not a herpes simplex vaccine. How do we know it would work? The shingles vaccine is a live attenuated chicken pox (varicells) virus cultured on aborted human fetal cells. (MRC5 line), so the vaccine contains human DNA fragments.
Information about the Shingles Vaccine:
“The live virus shingles vaccine is actually a very strong booster dose of the Varicella Zoster (chickenpox) vaccine. Zostavax vaccine for shingles and Varivax vaccine for chickenpox are both manufactured by Merck and are the only licensed vaccines to prevent chickenpox and shingles in the U.S.”
In the Zostavax product information insert, Merck describes the ingredients of shingles vaccine:
“ZOSTAVAX is a lyophilized preparation of the Oka/Merck strain of live, attenuated varicella-zoster virus (VZV). ZOSTAVAX, when reconstituted as directed, is a sterile suspension for subcutaneous administration. Each 0.65-mL dose contains a minimum of 19,400 PFU (plaque-forming units) of Oka/Merck strain of VZV when reconstituted and stored at room temperature for up to 30 minutes. Each dose contains 31.16 mg of sucrose, 15.58 mg of hydrolyzed porcine gelatin, 3.99 mg of sodium chloride, 0.62 mg of monosodium L-glutamate, 0.57 mg of sodium phosphate dibasic, 0.10 mg of potassium phosphate monobasic, 0.10 mg of potassium chloride; residual components of MRC-5 cells including DNA and protein; and trace quantities of neomycin and bovine calf serum. The product contains no preservatives.”
Serious Adverse Events
“By August 2011, the federal Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) had received 442 serious vaccine adverse reports following Zostavax vaccination, including 36 reported deaths . Serious shingles vaccine reaction symptoms reported to VAERS include rash, joint pain (arthralgia), muscle pain (myalgia), fever, abnormally swollen glands (lymphadenopathy) and hypersensitivity reactions including anaphylaxis (shock).”(reference)
After a few minutes I thought well, maybe somebody else has done a study and tried the Shingles Vaccine for recurrent oral herpes. Maybe it does work, Let’s look it up.
We found a 2012 study France: Efficacy of antiVZV antiHSV3 vaccine HSV1 HSV2 recurrent herpes simplex Jacqueline Le Goaster 2012.
In a hospital in Paris a prospective study was done in 2012 using shingles vaccine for 24 patients with recurrent oral-facial herpes, uncontrolled by acyclovir. Another 25 patient serves as controls. Remarkably, the shingles vaccine group had zero recurrence of herpes over 6 years of follow up, while the control group continued to have 4-5 outbreaks per year as before.
I turned to Linda and said I would have to change my opinion, as this actually looks pretty good for preventing attacks of oral herpes. So, if you notice a piece of my hat missing, that’s where I had to take a large bite and “Eat My Hat”.
Jeffrey Dach MD
This article is part two of a series, for part one, click here.
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Jeffrey Dach MD
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Davie, Fl 33314
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