What is the shingles virus?

The varicella zoster virus, also known as the shingles virus, is the same virus that causes the chickenpox.

If you have had the chickenpox, and that’s over 90% of adults, your immune system has kept the shingles virus hidden.

by getting older  our immune system naturally weakens. Therefore, the shingles virus may reactivate, increasing the risk of developing shingles.

What are some shingles symptoms?

Shingles can result in a painful and blistering rash that can last several weeks.

The pain from shingles can be severe, disabling and may interfere with doing normal day-to-day activities including walking, sleeping and social activities.

Shingles may cause serious complications such as long-lasting nerve pain (also called postherpetic neuralgia or PHN), which can last for months or years.

Other signs and symptoms may include:


Burning, numbness, or tingling

Sensitivity to touch



Vision problems

Loss of hearing


is a vaccine that helps protect adults against shingles (also called herpes zoster).

By getting age, the risk of getting shingles increases. SHINGRIX is to help the body build its protection against shingles, regardless of increasing age.

You will receive two SHINGRIX doses, with a gap of 2 to 6 months between doses

If you’re between 65 and 70 years old, you can get vaccinated against shingles free of charge in Ontario in your own family physician office.

If you are younger or older than this age range and you have a private plan you need a prescription from your doctor or from our Walk-in clinic to have it covered then our injection trained pharmacists will administer it for free versus some other pharmacies such as Shoppers Drug Mart that charge 20$ for injection. If you do not have a drug plan the pharmacist based on the regulations can sell it without prescription with a reasonable discount and inject it for free in Pharmacare Medical Group.

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