Here’s a take a look at Ramsay Hunt syndrome (herpes zoster oticus) and what it entails.
What’s Ramsay Hunt syndrome?
According to the Mayo Clinic, Ramsay Hunt syndrome (herpes zoster oticus) occurs when a shingles outbreak impacts the facial nerve close to one of your ears. In addition to the painful shingles rash, Ramsay Hunt syndrome may cause facial paralysis and hearing loss within the affected ear.
Ramsay Hunt syndrome is caused by the same virus that causes chickenpox. After chickenpox clears up, the virus nonetheless lives in your nerves. Years later, it could reactivate. When it does, it may affect your facial nerves.
Prompt remedy of Ramsay Hunt syndrome can reduce the risk of issues, which may include everlasting facial muscle weakness and deafness.
What are the symptoms?
In accordance with the Mayo Clinic, the 2 main signs and symptoms of Ramsay Hunt syndrome are:
A painful red rash with fluid-filled blisters on, in, and around one ear
Facial weakness or paralysis on the same facet as the affected ear
Usually, the rash and the facial paralysis happen at the same time. Sometimes one can occur earlier than the other. On other occasions, the rash by no means happens.
When you have Ramsay Hunt syndrome, you might also experience:
Ringing in your ears (tinnitus)
Difficulty closing one eye
A sensation of spinning or moving (vertigo)
A change in taste perception or loss of taste
Dry mouth and eyes
Complications of Ramsay Hunt syndrome may include:
Permanent hearing loss and facial weakness. For most people, the hearing loss and facial paralysis associated with Ramsay Hunt syndrome are short-term. However, it can become permanent.
Eye damage. The facial weakness caused by Ramsay Hunt syndrome may make it difficult for you to close your eyelid. When this happens, the cornea, which protects your eye, can become damaged. This harm can cause eye pain and blurred vision.
Postherpetic neuralgia. This painful situation happens when a shingle or infection damages nerve fibers. The messages despatched by these nerve fibers change into confused and exaggerated, causing pain that may final long after other signs and signs of Ramsay Hunt syndrome have faded.
Kids are now routinely vaccinated against chickenpox, which greatly reduces the chances of becoming contaminated with the chickenpox virus. A shingles vaccine for people age 50 or older also is beneficial.
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