Bodily symptoms of an active shingles virus include a rash in form of a strip on one side of the body and possibly on various areas of the face, according to WebMD. Blisters that leak and crust over appear within five days before scarring between two and four weeks.
Shingles is the reactivated form of the chickenpox virus, says WebMD. The number one indicator of a reactivated virus is the rash that appears in the shape of a band. The individual may experience burning, tingling or numbness in the area before a rash appears. Other symptoms preceding the rash include headache, swelling in the lymph nodes and symptoms that mimic the flu, minus the fever.
The virus affects the nerves within the body, which makes the rash hurt more than it itches, as stated by WebMD. If the rash spreads to the face so much that it affects the eye, the individual is advised to seek medical attention immediately to prevent impaired vision.
The most severe form of the shingles virus is called postherpetic neuralgia, which occurs when the virus enters the chronic pain stage, according to WebMD. An aching or stabbing pain may occur in the parts of the body affected by the virus and may last for up to 30 days, but pain in the forehead and chest may last for years.