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Vitamin C relieves pain induced by herpes zoster

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By David Liu PHD

Monday July 2, 2012 (foodconsumer.org) -- Intravenous injection of vitamin C can help relieve pain  and dematologic symptoms of shingles induced by herpes zoster, a new study in the April 2012 issue of Medical Science Monitor.

The study led by  M Schencking of Heart-Jesus Hospital in Dernbach, Germany and colleagues shows that of patients with syptomatic herpes zoster who received vitamin C intravenously (Pascorbin® 7.5 g/50 ml) for about 14 days while receiving standard treatment, only 6.4 percent experienced post-herpetic neuralgia.

The study involved 67 participants with symptomatic herpes zoster who received treatments including both intravenous vitamin C injection and standard treatment from 16 general practitioners between April 2009 and Dec 2010.

Vitamin C helps immunity against viral infections and its deficiency seems to have something to do with the pathogenesis of herpes infections and the development of postherpetic neuralgia, the researchers wrote.

In the study, vitamin C injection also improved common complaints such as general fatigue and impaired concentration.  The treatment was found effective and well tolerable.

The researchers concluded "The data presented here provide evidence that concomitant use of intravenously administered ascorbic acid may have beneficial effects on herpes zoster-associated pain, dermatologic findings and accompanying common complaints."

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