CDC recommends shingles vaccination for older adults
More than 43 million adults are at risk for the disease, and roughly 500,000 seniors contract it every year, according to the CDC. Merck & Co. Inc's vaccine Zostavax has been shown to reduce the occurrence of shingles in seniors by up to 69% in some age groups.
Shingles is a skin irritation disease that is caused by the same virus as the chicken pox. It is usually triggered by emotional stress, immune deficiency, cancer, or other illnesses and factors that can be related to aging, according to the CDC. Because the chicken pox virus never leaves the body, anyone who contracted the disease in childhood is at risk for shingles later in life.