Signs & Symptoms Neurology & Neurosurgery

Post-Herpetic Neuralgia
Signs and Symptoms

Pain associated with post-herpetic neuralgia (PHN) can be very intense, often described by patients as deep, aching and unbearable. In some cases, even a light touch, like the pressure of a shirt or gust of wind, can cause intense pain.

Because of the intensity of pain, it can interfere with daily life, including sleep and appetite. Depression is common because of the severe pain and social isolation that can occur.

Some PHN patients have to stop their normal activities for months. And for some, the pain can last for several years.

UCSF Health medical specialists have reviewed this information. It is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor or other health care provider. We encourage you to discuss any questions or concerns you may have with your provider.

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