Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
, 58 (1), 9-20

THE NATURE OF HERPES ZOSTER: A LONG-TERM STUDY AND A NEW HYPOTHESIS

THE NATURE OF HERPES ZOSTER: A LONG-TERM STUDY AND A NEW HYPOTHESIS

R E HOPE-SIMPSON. Proc R Soc Med.

Abstract

Dr Hope-Simpson presents a study of all cases of herpes zoster occurring in his general practice during a sixteen-year period. The rate was 3.4 per thousand per annum, rising with age, and the distribution of lesions reflected that of the varicella rash.It was found that severity increased with age, but that the condition did not occur in epidemics, and that there was no characteristic seasonal variation. A low prevalence of varicella was usually associated with a high incidence of zoster.Dr Hope-Simpson suggests that herpes zoster is a spontaneous manifestation of varicella infection. Following the primary infection (chickenpox), virus becomes latent in the sensory ganglia, where it can be reactivated from time to time (herpes zoster). Herpes zoster then represents an adaptation enabling varicella virus to survive for long periods, even without a continuous supply of persons susceptible to chickenpox.

Similar articles

See all similar articles

Cited by 296 PubMed Central articles

See all "Cited by" articles

References

    1. Acta Med Scand. 1955 Feb 23;151(2):131-4 - PubMed
    1. J Am Med Assoc. 1959 Oct 17;171:876-80 - PubMed
    1. J Am Med Assoc. 1957 May 18;164(3):265-9 - PubMed
    1. Annu Rev Physiol. 1962;24:199-222 - PubMed
    1. Br Med J. 1958 Aug 16;2(5093):418-21 - PubMed
Feedback