Shingles diagnosis is relatively easy to set if the rash is visible on the skin. In that case it is quite apparent so there are no any doubts and the treatment may start.
It is more complicated to diagnose this condition if there are no visible symptoms. Some of its symptoms (regardless of the rash) are seen in other health problems, so some efforts must be made in order to distinguish this condition from those with similar symptoms.
The method that is considered quite reliable is a laboratory test. It measures the level of antibodies that are only active if the herpes zoster or chickenpox is present but not during the virus dormancy. If there are blisters, then it is easier to determine their origin simply by taking the lymph from the blisters and analyzing it in the laboratory. What is certain is that if you react in time, the chances to reduce all possible complications are greater. It means that you should see your doctor as soon as you notice any changes on your skin.
We have already said that before the shingles occurs, most of the infected people are unaware of this condition. But there can be symptoms other than rash that may appear before the rash itself like numbness, itching or pain. Sometimes this pain is so persistent and strong that some patients think that there is something wrong with their kidneys or appendix. There were cases of mistaking this virus for heart conditions, because the pain may occur in this part of the body as well. So you can get the picture how difficult this can be for a patient who doesn’t know what the problem is.
To avoid this rather unpleasant situation, you should see a doctor regardless of the symptoms. If you are experiencing any kind of pain or problem, you should check your health.