Q:

Can you contract shingles from someone who doesn't have the rash?

A:

Quick Answer

Shingles cannot be transmitted from one person to another, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. However, a person who has active shingles can spread the varicella zoster virus to another person who has never had chicken pox, causing that person to develop chicken pox, not shingles.

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Full Answer

The varicella zoster virus can be spread through direct contact with the fluid that is inside the blisters, explains the CDC. Therefore, a person is not contagious before the blisters appear or after they have crusted over. The CDC recommends against scratching the rash and states that it should be kept covered.

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