Shingles and the Prostate Cancer

VascodaGama
VascodaGama Member Posts: 3,495 Member
edited November 2014 in Prostate Cancer #1

 

For whatever reason it may be two days ago I have been attacked with an outbreak of shingles .It started with flu like symptoms of fever accompanied of the typical pain and discomfort all over the body. I took paracetamol that night for no effect and realized that in fact I did not have a blocked nose or sore throat. I could not sleep well and in the morning my wife saw a large pinkish patch in my back. My GP told me of the details and for curiosity (this is my first experience with the disease) I started “digging and digging” on the matter. My conclusions is that prevention against shingles should be a concern of us all survivors of PCa.

It seems that one in each three persons (over 65 years old) will get the disease. They recommend (compulsive) vaccination at 60. The worse of the outbreak is pain that can last during one month or more and such seem not easy to treat with over the counter medication. I recall reading in this forum about someone that had to postpone radiation treatment due to shingles. I also recall someone indicating that shingles can be considered a late side effect from radiation or chemotherapy in cancer treatments. Shingles seems to be common in PCa patients with bone metastases. Anti-viral medications also interact with some hormonal and chemo drugs causing delays that can be crucial. Dr. Myers answers to this patient as follows;

Do you recommend the Shingles Vaccine for your patients who are actively on intermittent hormonal therapy and those who are in prostate cancer remission? My internist recommended that I be vaccinated since I turned 60 this summer and am considered by him to be “high risk”.

“….Yes, I strongly recommend the shingles vaccine to my patients. I also made sure I got this vaccine myself. You should also get the Pneumovax vaccine against pneumonia and remember to get the flu vaccine yearly.
If you are in the off phase of hormonal therapy, you should do what you can to slow the re-growth of the prostate cancer. I would strongly recommend you at least adopt a Mediterranean heart healthy diet free of red meat, cold cuts, and bacon. I also recommend you take enough vitamin D to make sure you are not deficient: this is best done with a blood test measuring the 25-hydroxyvitamin D3. At AIDP we have a much more comprehensive program that requires close monitoring of our patients, but then we try to keep our patients off hormonal therapy for as long as possible.”

www.prostateforum.com/Sample-Issue.pdf

All about Shingles;
http://pediatrics.about.com/cs/commoninfections/a/shingles.htm

Here is a PCa case that become nasty with the unfolding of an outbreak of shingles;
http://csn.cancer.org/node/219847

 

May I suggest to my comrades to consider the shingles vaccination, before it strikes in the most inappropriate timing!

Innocent

«1

Comments

  • hopeful and optimistic
    hopeful and optimistic Member Posts: 2,333 Member
    Other recommended vaccines, and diagnostic tests

    I am sorry for the discomfort that you are experiencing.

     

    Also consider a flu vacine which is recommended by the cde for all who are over 6 months old, addditionally a "Fluzone High Dose" is recommended for those 65 years and older if no previous severe reaction to the vaccine.

    http://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/season/flu-season-2014-2015.htm

     

    Colorectal Cancer Screening Guidelines, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

    Division of Cancer Prevention and Control

    http://www.cdc.gov/cancer/colorectal/basic_info/screening/guidelines.htm

     

     

  • Old-timer
    Old-timer Member Posts: 196
    Shingles

    Vasco,

    I am truly sorry to learn about your bout with shingles.

    I never thought about or considered that shingles and treatments for PC could be related. 

    About eight years ago, my primary care doctor said that I need not fear getting shingles unless I had chicken pox. In fact, he advised against getting shingles shots if I had not had chicken pox. Consequently, I have not had the shots--and I have not had shingles. Knock on wood!

    Old-timer

  • Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3
    Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3 Member Posts: 3,721 Member
    Old-timer said:

    Shingles

    Vasco,

    I am truly sorry to learn about your bout with shingles.

    I never thought about or considered that shingles and treatments for PC could be related. 

    About eight years ago, my primary care doctor said that I need not fear getting shingles unless I had chicken pox. In fact, he advised against getting shingles shots if I had not had chicken pox. Consequently, I have not had the shots--and I have not had shingles. Knock on wood!

    Old-timer

    Very common

    Shingles is very common following lymphoma treatments, for reasons not fully understood. My oncologist recommends the vaccine to all of his lymphoma patients, and so I guess it is advisable for any cancer patient or former patient.  Thanks for reminding us, Vasco.

    max

  • Swingshiftworker
    Swingshiftworker Member Posts: 1,013 Member
    Shingles Vaccination?

    Sorry about your bout w/shingles, Vaco.  Thanks for the info.

    I've always been suspicious of mass media campaigns that push the treatment of certain diseases and, since I'd never heard of shingles before and no one I've known has ever had it, I lumped it into the suspect category and have never gotten vaccinated for it.

    However, this is what WedMD says are the risk factors:

    Things that increase risk for shingles include:

    • Having had chickenpox. You must have had chickenpox to get shingles.
    • Being older than 50.
    • Having a weakened immune system due to another disease, such as diabetes or HIV infection.
    • Experiencing stress or trauma.
    • Having cancer or receiving treatment for cancer.
    • Taking medicines that affect your immune system, such as steroids or medicines that are taken after having an organ transplant.

    See: http://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/shingles/shingles-what-increases-your-risk.

    I've had chickenpox TWICE, am over 50 and have been treated for cancer.  So, I guess I should reconsider and go ahead and get vaccinated for it. 

  • CC52
    CC52 Member Posts: 103 Member
    Allow me...

    Vasco - sorry that you have to endure this. No fun!

    Some of you may recall my recent September posts regarding a shingles outbreak I experienced during my CK treatments. My RO reassured me that the treatments were not the cause of the shingles - one of the primary causes is stress. Who knows what triggers it, but I believe strongly that the vaccine should be encouraged by treating physicians. Better safe than sorry.

    CC

  • tarhoosier
    tarhoosier Member Posts: 195
    Herpes zoster

    I had Shingles when I was 22 and was one of the most excruciating experiences of my life. I NEVER want to go through that again, particularly at my much further advanced age. Any weakening of the immune system may allow the dormant Herpes to restart. Zostavax is a vaccine that limits the chance of shingles for those who had chicken pox (herpes) in their past, most likely in childhood. Zostavax does not give complete immunity but any protection is worth it.

    My case at age 22 first looked like poison ivy or some other plant oil reaction. I ignored it until the tiny nerve endings were swollen and then burst open and the pain of a thousand exposed nerve endings is about what you would imagine it would be. Shingles almost always presents on one side of the body only. In my case it was the torso on the right side. It can also be on one side of the face, a more serious situation because of eye involvement. Seek attention immediately if there is an apparent rash or redness or streaks on one side only (or even both side, really). Early intervention can reduce the outbreak.

  • Rakendra
    Rakendra Member Posts: 197 Member
    shingles

    Wow, not fun.  I had them about 20 years ago in Thailand.  I remember there wasnot a lot the docs could do, so I went to the local Shaman who ground up a bunch of leaves and powders and rubbed it on my back.  The he took a branch with leaves and rubbed my back following with a good dose of spit.  It seemed to help.  Sorry, I cannot tell you how to contact him. The good news is that I think you can only get it one time. Good luck. love, rakendra

  • tarhoosier
    tarhoosier Member Posts: 195
    Shingles one time

    It is unclear if a person who has a second outbreak of shingles is actually experiencing a second event or a recurrence of the first. Since this Herpes Zoster lies dormant for years in the body it may be impossible to tell which event is occurring.

    Another problem is that for those exposed to H. Zoster (chicken pox) they may not have expressed the symptoms and thus are unaware of their compromised immunity. This is often in childhood and memories are missing.

    If you are in the group unvaccinated as children for chicken pox and you are over 60 now a Zostavax shot may be in your best interest, regardless of your shingles history. Check with your doctor.

    I had chicken pox as a child and shingles at age 22. My doctors both recommended the vaccination.

  • Swingshiftworker
    Swingshiftworker Member Posts: 1,013 Member
    Cost of Shingles Vaccination

    So, I looked into getting a shingles vaccination via my health care provider at UCSF, which is covered by the Hill Physicans Group under CA Blue Shield.

    Strangely, UCSF doesn't seem to have any means of providing shots/vaccinations for its health care patients and I've always been directed to get shots elsewhere.  This was no exception.  My doc said he'd send a prescription order for the shot to my local Walgreens.  I called to confirm that they received the order and was told that it was NOT covered by Blue Shield and that it would cost me $225 (plus tax - about 9%) out of pocket.

    However, Hill Physicans told me that it is reimburseable up to $250 under my Blue Shield Plan.  In fact, they have a reimbursement form online that I printed out which says the same.  Found it very interesting that the amount of reimbursement is almost exactly what Walgreens will charge me (including tax) for the shot.   I wonder if the cost would be $100 if that's what Blue Shield would pay for the shot instead.  Hmmm . . .

    Anyway, since it's fully reimburseable, I guess there's no good reason NOT to get the shot.  So, I'll be getting it shortly -- probably after TG in case there are any unexpected side effects.

     

     

  • hopeful and optimistic
    hopeful and optimistic Member Posts: 2,333 Member

    Cost of Shingles Vaccination

    So, I looked into getting a shingles vaccination via my health care provider at UCSF, which is covered by the Hill Physicans Group under CA Blue Shield.

    Strangely, UCSF doesn't seem to have any means of providing shots/vaccinations for its health care patients and I've always been directed to get shots elsewhere.  This was no exception.  My doc said he'd send a prescription order for the shot to my local Walgreens.  I called to confirm that they received the order and was told that it was NOT covered by Blue Shield and that it would cost me $225 (plus tax - about 9%) out of pocket.

    However, Hill Physicans told me that it is reimburseable up to $250 under my Blue Shield Plan.  In fact, they have a reimbursement form online that I printed out which says the same.  Found it very interesting that the amount of reimbursement is almost exactly what Walgreens will charge me (including tax) for the shot.   I wonder if the cost would be $100 if that's what Blue Shield would pay for the shot instead.  Hmmm . . .

    Anyway, since it's fully reimburseable, I guess there's no good reason NOT to get the shot.  So, I'll be getting it shortly -- probably after TG in case there are any unexpected side effects.

     

     

    Shingles Vaccine Experience

    I had mine about 15 years ago, when I was in my late 50ties. At that time, the shingles vaccination  was becoming available to the public. My lady-friend was and is an advanced practice nurse in a hospital setting. She read about the "new" vaccine. 

    We were each patients of the same Kaiser Doc, although he was not aware that we knew each other.  I  brought supporting information, and asked him to write a script for the new vaccine. He mentioned to me that only one other  patient asked about getting the vaccine. At that time Kaiser did not have the vaccine, but it was available six months later. (By the way my Lady-Friend was in her early 50ties when we received the shots).

  • Old Salt
    Old Salt Member Posts: 899 Member
    Rakendra said:

    shingles

    Wow, not fun.  I had them about 20 years ago in Thailand.  I remember there wasnot a lot the docs could do, so I went to the local Shaman who ground up a bunch of leaves and powders and rubbed it on my back.  The he took a branch with leaves and rubbed my back following with a good dose of spit.  It seemed to help.  Sorry, I cannot tell you how to contact him. The good news is that I think you can only get it one time. Good luck. love, rakendra

    Shingles twice?

    The CDC recommends vaccination even for people who have had shingles. Hence, one can get shingles a second time.

     

    PS: as an aside, what perhaps hasn't been pointed out (much) in this thread is that a shingles attack can lead to nasty neuropathies that won't go away.

    PS#2: Had a shingles attack about ten years ago, long before my prostate cancer was discovered. By the time the proper diagnosis was made, treatment would have been futile; just had to face up to it. Fortunately, no long-term problems.

  • HolyMole
    HolyMole Member Posts: 7

    Shingles Vaccine Experience

    I had mine about 15 years ago, when I was in my late 50ties. At that time, the shingles vaccination  was becoming available to the public. My lady-friend was and is an advanced practice nurse in a hospital setting. She read about the "new" vaccine. 

    We were each patients of the same Kaiser Doc, although he was not aware that we knew each other.  I  brought supporting information, and asked him to write a script for the new vaccine. He mentioned to me that only one other  patient asked about getting the vaccine. At that time Kaiser did not have the vaccine, but it was available six months later. (By the way my Lady-Friend was in her early 50ties when we received the shots).

    Shingles Vaccine Experience

    My mother went through a terrible month of pain with shingles when she was in her 50's- couldn't even stand the bedsheets coming into contact with her skin, had to "tent" the bedsheets.

    One Sunday morning, while shaving, I noticed red welts/rash on my left arm - so odd-looking that I immediately went to Emergency at our local hospital. Within an hour they had diagnosed shingles and started me on famciclovir tablets. Because I started treatment so quickly, my case turned out to be mild, lasted about a month, with only mild pain on the back of my neck. According to the hospital, the famciclovir is most effective if started within 24 hours of the outbreak. In my case, it was significantly less than 24 hours.

    I've been told I could get a second attack, but typically it would be less severe than the first, so getting the shingles shot is probably not necessary. My shingles was at least 3 or 4 years before my PC diagnosis, so likely no connection at all.

    A final word on any vaccinations/injections: I had my annual flu shot in mid-October, which was administered 'way too high on my arm - almost, it seemed, into the shoulder bone itself, and I suffered pain for the better part of a month. The condition, (news to me) even has a name: SIRVA or Shoulder Injury Related To Vaccine Administration.

    Check out  http://www.jabfm.org/content/25/6/919.full

    and pay attention to where they plan to jab you for those shots.

     

     

     

     

  • Old Salt
    Old Salt Member Posts: 899 Member
    HolyMole said:

    Shingles Vaccine Experience

    My mother went through a terrible month of pain with shingles when she was in her 50's- couldn't even stand the bedsheets coming into contact with her skin, had to "tent" the bedsheets.

    One Sunday morning, while shaving, I noticed red welts/rash on my left arm - so odd-looking that I immediately went to Emergency at our local hospital. Within an hour they had diagnosed shingles and started me on famciclovir tablets. Because I started treatment so quickly, my case turned out to be mild, lasted about a month, with only mild pain on the back of my neck. According to the hospital, the famciclovir is most effective if started within 24 hours of the outbreak. In my case, it was significantly less than 24 hours.

    I've been told I could get a second attack, but typically it would be less severe than the first, so getting the shingles shot is probably not necessary. My shingles was at least 3 or 4 years before my PC diagnosis, so likely no connection at all.

    A final word on any vaccinations/injections: I had my annual flu shot in mid-October, which was administered 'way too high on my arm - almost, it seemed, into the shoulder bone itself, and I suffered pain for the better part of a month. The condition, (news to me) even has a name: SIRVA or Shoulder Injury Related To Vaccine Administration.

    Check out  http://www.jabfm.org/content/25/6/919.full

    and pay attention to where they plan to jab you for those shots.

     

     

     

     

    That's just not acceptable!

    Malpractice?

    I hope you raised hell with the person who administered the shot.

     

  • Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3
    Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3 Member Posts: 3,721 Member
    HolyMole said:

    Shingles Vaccine Experience

    My mother went through a terrible month of pain with shingles when she was in her 50's- couldn't even stand the bedsheets coming into contact with her skin, had to "tent" the bedsheets.

    One Sunday morning, while shaving, I noticed red welts/rash on my left arm - so odd-looking that I immediately went to Emergency at our local hospital. Within an hour they had diagnosed shingles and started me on famciclovir tablets. Because I started treatment so quickly, my case turned out to be mild, lasted about a month, with only mild pain on the back of my neck. According to the hospital, the famciclovir is most effective if started within 24 hours of the outbreak. In my case, it was significantly less than 24 hours.

    I've been told I could get a second attack, but typically it would be less severe than the first, so getting the shingles shot is probably not necessary. My shingles was at least 3 or 4 years before my PC diagnosis, so likely no connection at all.

    A final word on any vaccinations/injections: I had my annual flu shot in mid-October, which was administered 'way too high on my arm - almost, it seemed, into the shoulder bone itself, and I suffered pain for the better part of a month. The condition, (news to me) even has a name: SIRVA or Shoulder Injury Related To Vaccine Administration.

    Check out  http://www.jabfm.org/content/25/6/919.full

    and pay attention to where they plan to jab you for those shots.

     

     

     

     

    geeze
    How stupid can someone who is supposidely trained to give injections be ?
  • Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3
    Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3 Member Posts: 3,721 Member

    Cost of Shingles Vaccination

    So, I looked into getting a shingles vaccination via my health care provider at UCSF, which is covered by the Hill Physicans Group under CA Blue Shield.

    Strangely, UCSF doesn't seem to have any means of providing shots/vaccinations for its health care patients and I've always been directed to get shots elsewhere.  This was no exception.  My doc said he'd send a prescription order for the shot to my local Walgreens.  I called to confirm that they received the order and was told that it was NOT covered by Blue Shield and that it would cost me $225 (plus tax - about 9%) out of pocket.

    However, Hill Physicans told me that it is reimburseable up to $250 under my Blue Shield Plan.  In fact, they have a reimbursement form online that I printed out which says the same.  Found it very interesting that the amount of reimbursement is almost exactly what Walgreens will charge me (including tax) for the shot.   I wonder if the cost would be $100 if that's what Blue Shield would pay for the shot instead.  Hmmm . . .

    Anyway, since it's fully reimburseable, I guess there's no good reason NOT to get the shot.  So, I'll be getting it shortly -- probably after TG in case there are any unexpected side effects.

     

     

    differenf

    SSW, I live in a different state and our BC plan covers the vaccine in or out of a doctor's office at 100%.  

    Ouch ! Our sales taxes here are 5%.  Nearby Tennessee and Florida have no (zero) income tax. Tennessee does have an average sales tax of 7%, but localities do stick on substantial municipal taxes in many areas. I am not sure how medicines are taxed in those states, if at all.

    max

  • Swingshiftworker
    Swingshiftworker Member Posts: 1,013 Member

    differenf

    SSW, I live in a different state and our BC plan covers the vaccine in or out of a doctor's office at 100%.  

    Ouch ! Our sales taxes here are 5%.  Nearby Tennessee and Florida have no (zero) income tax. Tennessee does have an average sales tax of 7%, but localities do stick on substantial municipal taxes in many areas. I am not sure how medicines are taxed in those states, if at all.

    max

    Wonderful CA!

    Hey Max: I'm a native Californian but I've been thinking about moving out of state for awhile. 

    The high cost of living (including taxes) is just one reason BUT I have enough $ to live here.  So, there aren't enough reasons to make me move YET but, if I do, I'd probably move to the Southwest (AZ, NM or TX) which are the most appealing states to me.  I've also thought about moving out of the country -- most likely Mexico -- but it would take even more motivation for me to do that.

    Actually, the quality and low cost of medical care under under BS at UCSF is my main reason for staying put where I am.  If I move out of state, I'd still have BS but not UCSF and, if I move to another country, I'd pretty much be own my own as far as medical care is concerned UNLESS I can come back to the US for medical treatment under BS.

     

     

  • VascodaGama
    VascodaGama Member Posts: 3,495 Member
    Update on my encounter with the shingles

    I wonder what would have been better; attacked by PCa or by Shingles.

    This is no joke; it has been a week in hell. Four days in bed with fever (not very high), loads of discomfort because you can lie only on your left side and pain that comes from nowhere but it is everywhere. In the last three days the condition has improved a lot but still got the “remarkable” scars along 180o of my torso, now more acceptable to the touch.

    My brother, sister and wife and her siblings got just in “panic” for the facts. It surprised us all. And now they want to be vaccinated. Here in Portugal the vaccine is not covered by the National Health Service. In England they cover only the ones at 70; If you are younger or older (say 72) then you must pay out of your pocket. It seems that they do the job for 250 euros plus 25% of VAT, a shot. (USA a country will no taxes. That is wonderful)

    The treatment was basically an antiviral pill (acyclovir) every four hours plus toping antiviral cream (10mg would cover just two times of application), five times a day. The Pain killer was nice (Metamizol) but it would be effective for a short period of approximately three hours. I was recommended one pill a day (at bed time) but took it twice a day. The effect was so fabulous that I decided to investigate on its contents.
    I found that it is an old drug (1922) banned in USA and England but available under prescription in all other European countries. It has been used in post surgical procedures. I would keep a note on its name just in case I need something similar in future (there have been so many survivors reporting suffering with pain and without any good medicine to relief it).

    I am now fit and think it will be OK by the time I will travel to Japan (November 29th), for my international Shogi match (Japanese chess). I hope to avoid the pain killer when closer to the games (or maybe I can use it as an excuse for bad performance). We will be 46 countries competing for the podium.

    This thread had many reporting about their experiences and I think that the readers will benefit a lot from the comments. The symptoms seem to be different in some guys and some do better than others but “Is it worth to get vaccinated?”  Yes it is.

    Thanks for the words of encouragement.

    VG

  • Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3
    Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3 Member Posts: 3,721 Member

    Wonderful CA!

    Hey Max: I'm a native Californian but I've been thinking about moving out of state for awhile. 

    The high cost of living (including taxes) is just one reason BUT I have enough $ to live here.  So, there aren't enough reasons to make me move YET but, if I do, I'd probably move to the Southwest (AZ, NM or TX) which are the most appealing states to me.  I've also thought about moving out of the country -- most likely Mexico -- but it would take even more motivation for me to do that.

    Actually, the quality and low cost of medical care under under BS at UCSF is my main reason for staying put where I am.  If I move out of state, I'd still have BS but not UCSF and, if I move to another country, I'd pretty much be own my own as far as medical care is concerned UNLESS I can come back to the US for medical treatment under BS.

     

     

    Trend
    SSW,
    I have read that the Southwest has a lot of former Californians in it, both individuals and corporations. I have not been west of Kansas, but love that region generally. A friend in Colorado Springs tells me Colorado is now "California East."

    I am from the Southeast, and we are now under a heavy, long term influx of people escaping the taxes and cold in the Northeast, the so-called "snow birds." Most go initially to Florida, but when they discover that it is too hot there, they become "Half Backs": folks who move half way back, to SC, NC, or Virginia.

    All of the former "Rust Belt" industries moved here decades ago, and more continue.
    max
  • Old-timer
    Old-timer Member Posts: 196

    Update on my encounter with the shingles

    I wonder what would have been better; attacked by PCa or by Shingles.

    This is no joke; it has been a week in hell. Four days in bed with fever (not very high), loads of discomfort because you can lie only on your left side and pain that comes from nowhere but it is everywhere. In the last three days the condition has improved a lot but still got the “remarkable” scars along 180o of my torso, now more acceptable to the touch.

    My brother, sister and wife and her siblings got just in “panic” for the facts. It surprised us all. And now they want to be vaccinated. Here in Portugal the vaccine is not covered by the National Health Service. In England they cover only the ones at 70; If you are younger or older (say 72) then you must pay out of your pocket. It seems that they do the job for 250 euros plus 25% of VAT, a shot. (USA a country will no taxes. That is wonderful)

    The treatment was basically an antiviral pill (acyclovir) every four hours plus toping antiviral cream (10mg would cover just two times of application), five times a day. The Pain killer was nice (Metamizol) but it would be effective for a short period of approximately three hours. I was recommended one pill a day (at bed time) but took it twice a day. The effect was so fabulous that I decided to investigate on its contents.
    I found that it is an old drug (1922) banned in USA and England but available under prescription in all other European countries. It has been used in post surgical procedures. I would keep a note on its name just in case I need something similar in future (there have been so many survivors reporting suffering with pain and without any good medicine to relief it).

    I am now fit and think it will be OK by the time I will travel to Japan (November 29th), for my international Shogi match (Japanese chess). I hope to avoid the pain killer when closer to the games (or maybe I can use it as an excuse for bad performance). We will be 46 countries competing for the podium.

    This thread had many reporting about their experiences and I think that the readers will benefit a lot from the comments. The symptoms seem to be different in some guys and some do better than others but “Is it worth to get vaccinated?”  Yes it is.

    Thanks for the words of encouragement.

    VG

    I'm reconsidering shingles shots

    Even though I am reasonably certain that I have not had chicken pox, I will take another look into whether I should get the shingles vaccination. Eight years ago, my primary care doc advised against it (I think). I may have misunderstood him or forgot what he said. I have a different PC doc now (a woman).

    I am overwhelmed by all the thought-provoking information provided by you folks.

    Vasco, continued good luck. And may you win the chess matches.

    Old-timer (Jerry)

  • tpelle
    tpelle Member Posts: 184

    Cost of Shingles Vaccination

    So, I looked into getting a shingles vaccination via my health care provider at UCSF, which is covered by the Hill Physicans Group under CA Blue Shield.

    Strangely, UCSF doesn't seem to have any means of providing shots/vaccinations for its health care patients and I've always been directed to get shots elsewhere.  This was no exception.  My doc said he'd send a prescription order for the shot to my local Walgreens.  I called to confirm that they received the order and was told that it was NOT covered by Blue Shield and that it would cost me $225 (plus tax - about 9%) out of pocket.

    However, Hill Physicans told me that it is reimburseable up to $250 under my Blue Shield Plan.  In fact, they have a reimbursement form online that I printed out which says the same.  Found it very interesting that the amount of reimbursement is almost exactly what Walgreens will charge me (including tax) for the shot.   I wonder if the cost would be $100 if that's what Blue Shield would pay for the shot instead.  Hmmm . . .

    Anyway, since it's fully reimburseable, I guess there's no good reason NOT to get the shot.  So, I'll be getting it shortly -- probably after TG in case there are any unexpected side effects.

     

     

    Shingles Shot Reimbursement

    I had shingles about fifteen years ago. 

    So, after reading this thread, I've decided to get the shingles shot tomorrow at my doctor's office.  Medicare doesn't pay any part of it, I'm told, but my Medicare Supplement (United Health), Part B pays for $20 of the administration fee and Part D pays the serum fee after an $85 deductible.  Without insurance my doctor said to be prepared to write a $250 check.