What is the role of varicella-zoster immune globulin (VZIG) in the prevention of herpes zoster (shingles)?

Updated: Jan 25, 2019
  • Author: Camila K Janniger, MD; Chief Editor: Dirk M Elston, MD  more...
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Answer

The CDC recommends administration of VZIG to prevent or modify clinical illness in persons with exposure to varicella or herpes zoster who are susceptible or immunocompromised. It should be reserved for patients at risk for severe disease and complications, such as neonates and patients who are immunocompromised or pregnant. [133]

VZIG provides maximum benefit when administered as soon as possible after the presumed exposure, but it may be effective if administered as late as 96 hours after exposure. Protection after VZIG administration lasts for an average of approximately 3 weeks, according to the CDC.


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