SHINGRIX can help protect you against shingles. Start by finding out if you’re at risk.

About shingles

Facts about shingles

What is shingles?

  • Shingles is a serious disease that can cause a blistering rash resulting in severe pain that has the potential to linger.
  • The shingles rash usually occurs on one side of the body, such as the face, neck, or torso.

An estimated 1 in 3 people get shingles in their lifetime.

What causes shingles?

  • Shingles is caused by a virus. The shingles virus, also called the varicella zoster virus, is the same one that causes chickenpox.
  • As we age, our immune system naturally weakens. As a result, the shingles virus may reactivate, increasing the risk of developing shingles.

If you’re among the 90% of Canadian adults over 50 years old who have had chickenpox, the virus that causes shingles is already inside you.

What are some shingles symptoms?

  • Shingles can result in a painful and blistering rash that can last several weeks. The pain can be severe, and may interfere with everyday activities, like getting dressed, walking, and sleeping.
  • Shingles may lead to serious complications, such as chronic nerve pain (also called postherpetic neuralgia, or PHN), which can last for months or even years.
  • Other symptoms may include:
    • Burning, numbness or tingling
    • Sensitivity to touch
    • Fever
    • Headache
    • Vision problems/loss of vision
    • Upset stomach
    • Loss of hearing

What does shingles look like?

WARNING: The following images may be disturbing.

Shingles around eyes Bardeaux sur le cou


* SHINGRIX can be given at the same time as the unadjuvanted seasonal influenza vaccine. The vaccines should be given at different injection sites.

The National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) and the Comité sur l'immunisation du Québec (CIQ) recommend SHINGRIX for adults 50 years of age and older.

Ask your doctor or pharmacist if SHINGRIX is right for you.

The Risk Game

Accessible Version

SHINGLES DOESN’T CARE, but you should!

Answer these questions to find out if you’re at risk.


What you need to know about SHINGRIX

  • SHINGRIX is a vaccine that helps protect against shingles (also called herpes zoster).
  • You will receive two SHINGRIX doses, with a gap of 2 to 6 months between doses.
  • To maximize the protection offered by SHINGRIX, it is important that you get both doses.
  • When you get your first dose, ask your doctor or pharmacist to schedule your next dose.
  • SHINGRIX is specially designed for adults 50 years of age and older to help the body build its protection against shingles, regardless of increasing age.
  • In clinical trials, SHINGRIX was shown to be over 90% effective at preventing shingles for people 50 years of age and older.
  • SHINGRIX is not for the prevention of chickenpox, nor for the treatment or prevention of the pain or symptoms associated with shingles, or its possible complications.

Ask your doctor or pharmacist to find out if SHINGRIX is right for you.

Need help remembering your second dose? Print a card and make a note of your next vaccination appointment.

Tools for you

The following tools and information are available to help you with your shingles vaccine. Please take a moment to review the information.


What is shingles?
Is the virus that causes chickenpox the same one that causes shingles?
What are some symptoms of shingles?
Are there early signs of shingles?
How common is shingles?
Can shingles come back more than once?
How effective is SHINGRIX?
How long does SHINGRIX, a shingles vaccine, last?
Will SHINGRIX protect against chickenpox?
Who should consider getting the shingles vaccine, SHINGRIX?
How many doses of SHINGRIX are required to maximize protection?
What are SHINGRIX side effects?
Can SHINGRIX cause shingles?
Where can I get SHINGRIX?
What is the cost of SHINGRIX?
Is the cost of SHINGRIX covered in my province?
Do I need a prescription to get SHINGRIX?

SHINGRIX is a vaccine that helps protect adults 50 years of age and older against shingles (herpes zoster). 100% protection cannot be guaranteed. SHINGRIX is not for prevention of chickenpox or for the treatment of herpes zoster (HZ) or the treatment and prevention of its complications, such as postherpetic neuralgia (PHN) and herpes zoster ophthalmicus (HZO). SHINGRIX should not be used if you are allergic to any ingredient in the vaccine. Very common adverse events (>10% of doses) reported in clinical trials were pain, redness, and swelling at the injection site, headache, stomach and digestive complaints, muscle pain, tiredness, chills, and fever. Most side effects were mild or moderate, lasting less than 3 days. Ask your healthcare professional if SHINGRIX is right for you. Full product information can be found at To report an adverse event, please call 1-800-387-7374.