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Evidence-Based Dermatology: Research Commentary
June 2001

A Population-Based Estimate of the Prevalence of Postherpetic Neuralgia After Herpes Zoster

Arch Dermatol. 2001;137(6):789-790. doi:10-1001/pubs.Arch Dermatol.-ISSN-0003-987x-137-6-deb10002

Prevalence of Postherpetic Neuralgia After a First Episode of Herpes Zoster: Prospective Study With Long Term Follow Up

Helgason S, Petursson G, Gudmundsson, Sigurdsson JA

BMJ. 2000;321:794-796

Postherpetic neuralgia is one of the most dreaded complications of herpes zoster. Prevention of postherpetic neuralgia is therefore an objective of most studies of the treatment of herpes zoster. Therapeutic interventions have included antiviral agents, corticosteroids, tricyclic antidepressants, and combinations thereof. An accurate estimate of the frequency, duration, and clinical importance of postherpetic neuralgia after a single episode of herpes zoster would be helpful in interpreting studies of the prevention of postherpetic neuralgia and in counseling patients about the risk of long-term pain after acute episodes of herpes zoster.

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