Zostavox - Duration Of Protection And Side Effects

Comments Submitted Says:

Vaccination given in the back of the upper arm.
Want to know duration of protection and side effects. Three days later arm is hot and painful..

8 Replies

Earliest Newest Votes
Verwon Says:

This is a one time vaccination to prevent the Herpes Zoster virus.

Merck has a website full of information for you, here's the link:


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Brooke Says:

The link didn't come through. Could you send it again, please?
I was very uncomfortable after the vaccination. My arm became swollen, the site became hard, the entire upper arm was red, hot and had an itching, burning feeling.
I did run a temperature that first night, with some chills, but they passed. Now, at five days since the vaccination, most of the symptoms have passed. The lump under the skin at the injection site has gone down considerably, although there is still a hard knot. It's smaller than it was, however.
Thanks for your help.

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Verwon Says:

The link is actually the name of the medication in my post, all you have to do is click on it and it will open the information for you in another window.

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Verwon Says:

I would also like to add that those sore spots and lumps are common, many people do not and are not told by their doctors or nurses, that you should actually gently massage the site for the next several days to help push the medication into your body.

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Brooke Says:

Thank you. It would seem my reaction was typical. No, I was not told to massage the area but wish I had been.
An ice pack helped.
Thanks again,

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mary Says:

Is there any test to tell if Zostavox shot is effective.I had a shot about a year ago and it does not appear to have any effect at all.

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Brooke Says:

The topic of Zostavox came up recently in conversation. I have not heard of a test that will determine how effective it has been, but would be interested IF there is such a thing. As uncomfortable as my shot was, I'd hate to have had it done with no results.
I'll keep watching this site.

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sheharpe Says:

I had my Zostavax shot a few weeks ago. The pharmacist told me there could be all manner of nasty side effects. My arm did lump with swelling, it was a little itchy on the second and third day, I had trouble with a swallowing my pills for a couple of days then I was fine. Nothing major really. I got the shot because my Aunt got Shingles really bad, I have had Chicken Pox and my immune system can be tricky.

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