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The first day my rash appeared I saw my dermatologist who diagnosed shingles and gave me an anti-viral medicine. The rash went through the typical stages of blisters, scabs, and eventally fading in color. But , as many here have described, the pain was unbearable on my left shoulder blade, left underarm, left breast. I went on a low dose of gabapentin and nortriptyline, which I'm still on (it's about 6 weeks since my rash first appeared). Three weeks ago, my dermatologist gave me steroid shots in the spots where I told him it hurt. He numbed the skin first and his assistant also blew very cold air onto the spot while he gave me the shot. The pain of the shot wasn't too bad, really, even in my armpit. He gave me many shots. It took at least a week to 10 days to feel a reducton of pain in those spots. I returned to him a week ago for more shots in the spots that still hurt. I felt relief more quickly this time, but he also gave me lots more shots than the first time. I have another appt. with him next week. These shots have been a godsend, as I wasn't able to wear a shirt or bra for weeks due to the pain. I'm almost back to normal now. I wouldn't call it pain anymore. It's now just a feeling of minor irritation where it used to hurt like heck. I don't know why I can't find any information on the internet about these steroid shots for shingles pain. I want everyone to know about them. I also went to my family doctor once about the shingles. She prescribed the gabapentin and anti-depressant. When I asked my dermatologist why she hadn't mentioned the steroid shots, he said that she wouldn't have been trained in that. I highly recommend the steroid shots. I believe my dermatologist told me that there is also a bit of lidocaine in those shots, but I'm not sure I'm right about that.