A person with shingles can pass the varicella-zoster virus to anyone who hasn’t had chickenpox before. This usually occurs through direct contact with the blisters or open sores of the shingles rash. Once infected, the person will develop chickenpox (not shingles). Until the blisters scab over, those with shingles should avoid contact with:

  • Anyone who has a weak immune system (HIV, diabetes)
  • Anyone who has never had chickenpox
  • Newborn babies
  • Pregnant women (chickenpox infection can be dangerous for a developing baby)