Shingles vaccine and TN

One thing my neurologist asked me about was shingles on my face/neck and I told him I had a shingles shot this past fall, which coincidently my TN started sometime in October...could there be a connection???

Send a Message to the moderator named RED… he will have an answer!

I don't see a Red in the moderator list.....

Oh I just found him!

I hope there is not connection. That would be awful if there was. You are being proactive about your health, so you get a shingles vaccine only to get TN because of it???? The only way for you to really know, is to find out what percentage of folks who have gotten the vaccine have also gotten TN afterwards, if this % is higher that the % who get TN in the average population,(in a statistically significant way) then perhaps there is a positive coorelation. Just a theory, but yes, Red would know for sure, he knows EVERYTHING!!! Its funny because just a couple of wks ago I was having a similar conversation with a gal who got TN from the shingles virus and I was wondering if I should get the vaccine to prevent this from happening to me. Best wishes to you Turtle bug.

Red replied to me today and he thinks there is no connection because the vaccine is not live....I'm just trying to figure out WHY ME!!!!! Both my mom and little sister have had shingles and I knew I never wanted to go there...and I would never wish TN on anyone-it is NOT FUN!

I hear ya. WHY ME is a question I have been asking over and over again as well. I would guess that every single one of us on here asks that same question again and again as well. Well then , I will get the shingles vaccine in a yr or two , I am 48 so I think they recommend it from age 50 on if I am not mistaken. I was going to say if I get TN after the vaccine I will let you know, but that cant happen because I ALREADY HAVE IT. Because this is still new for me, I go in and out of denial at times.. Just my little brains way of coping with this nightmare. Hang in there Turtle bug, I like that is so cute!!

This is a related question but not exactly. I've had TN for a couple of years now and for the last two weeks have had shingles. I am 47 so getting the shingle shot wasn't even brought up. The virus was confirmed by a skin test. It appeared on my face, on the side of my TN, thankfully on a different branch of the trigeminal nerve. One worry for both me and the doc that diagnosed me was that it would bring on a TN attack. It has. I have had two TN attacks in the last two weeks. Thankfully, mild ones. But the only two in the years since I've been on meds.

What is really odd is that one week after being diagnosed with shingles I had my appointment with a neurosurgeon to talk about MVD. He was amazed by the fact that I had shingles on the same nerve cluster as my TN and was going to look into it. But had no qualms about doing the surgery. And is scheduled July 6!!! After the shingles had run it's course. He did ask me if the pain was different.

I told him this. First. The pain from shingles was really bad but was easily treated by opioids. But strong ones. I could also feel when the blisters burst. And the pain was like acid. I described the pain from shingles as catastrophic but the pain from TN was apocalyptic.

You may be one of those people who did get it from the vaccine but we won't know it's possible for years to come. Now I know having inflammation or possible damage on one branch of the trigeminal nerve has triggered an attack on the other branch. Now the shingles only occurs on one nerve fiber but it did trigger an attack on a different nerve fiber.

If the vaccine did cause the TN then perhaps TN has a viral basis. That would be interesting. Not really helpful to you.

But there are people who get there tongues pierced and never get TN but there are the few who do. But it would be a lot more older people who have had the vaccine and who get TN. I guess what I am saying is perhaps TN does not happen in a void.

Also, now I also know getting shingles on your face can trigger TN attacks. Right there is a reason to get the shingle shot for me. Although now the chances of me getting shingles again is much rarer than getting TN.


The herpes virus, whether it is simplex or zoster lives in Trigeminal nerve for life. I was speaking with a lady that had an MVD and afterwards had a lot outbreaks with herpes. Her neuro told her that the virus was disrupted by the surgery and would settle eventually.

I have also chatted with people that have success treating TN with anti viral meds used for herpes.

That’s interesting

I have also chatted with people that have success treating TN with anti viral meds used for herpes.

I used to get a lot of really bad cold sores, aware that shingles is related, and often wondered if there was a link between the cold sores (herpes simplex) and my TN. I asked my GP if he thought the anti-viral meds would help and he thought that idea was rubbish.