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Postherapeutic pain relief??

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Old 12-30-2009, 07:12 AM   #1
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Postherapeutic pain relief??

My 88 year old grandmother got the shingles in July. The shingles have cleared up but she has been left with postherpeutic pain stemming from the shingles infection.

The pain suurounds the bone of her eye socket and cheekbone. It is always present as a dull pain but anything touching it at all or even a draught of air gives her a stabbing pain.

She has become debilitated by the pain and is losing alot of weight because of it now.

She was put on Gabpentin a month ago, and eats 4g of paracetamol a day for the pain with no relief.

I am ringing her doc tomorrow to ask about going onto amitriptyline in addition to the gabpentin and also asking about opioid pain relief for her. I've also researched and found limited information on a high concentration capsaicin patch but dont know if that would be suitable for her face especially at her age when the facial skin is so thin.

Does anyone out there know anyone who has suffered and dealt with this? Or does anyone out there have knowledge as to what I else I should be asking for for her? Or any information on the capsaicin patch I mentioned?

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Old 12-30-2009, 05:25 PM   #2
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Re: Postherpeutic pain relief??

If her regular physician can't help she may need to try and see a Pain Management doctors. I thought I had heard there were some newer medications for post herpetic neuralgia but I'm not sure.
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Old 12-31-2009, 07:34 AM   #3
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Re: Postherpeutic pain relief??

There is a product called Lidoderm that is a lidocane patch that was developed specifically for use for postherptic pain. I have used it myself both for postherptic pain and other chronic pain issues and it is effective. Unfortunately it's also pretty expensive if not covered by insurance. I think there are also some topical creams with lidocane that might be less expensive and better for use on delicate skin.

A consult with a PM doc would also be a good idea. There might be something in the way of a nerve block that could provide some relief as well.


Old 12-31-2009, 12:49 PM   #4
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Re: Postherapeutic pain relief??

Hi there. I am sorry she is in so much pain. I definitely would not try any cream near the eyes without the approval of her doc. I have heard and seen the wrath of nerve pain remaining after shingles and it definitely is extremely painful. I would get her in with a good pain mgmt doc because she is likely going to have pain for awhile.

Does she have any skin color changes or complain of it being ice cold?

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