The Principal at Riverwood High School sent a letter to parents of students attending regarding a student diagnosed with shingles at the school. The letter urged parents of students who have had neither chickenpox nor the chickenpox vaccine to alert their physician.
When shingles reactivates in a person’s body it causes painful rash-like clusters of blisters that contain the chickenpox virus and have been known to leave scars where they appear. The blister clusters vary in size and while on some people they barely show, they take up large areas of other peoples bodies. The blisters themselves are painful, itchy, and full of liquid.
Shingles starts as dormant chickenpox in the body and can ‘awaken’ when the body in in a weaker state than usual, such as going through sickness or malnutrition. Although shingles itself cannot be transferred from person to person, someone coming into contact with it can contract chickenpox if they have not already had it or received the vaccine themselves.
The student with shingles was sent home but due to the less than contagious nature of shingles, other students remain unaffected bit it and have been able to continue to go about their daily lives mostly unaware of its presence.