Review Article

Korean J Pain 2020; 33(3): 201-207

Published online July 1, 2020 https://doi.org/10.3344/kjp.2020.33.3.201

Copyright © The Korean Pain Society.

Recombinant zoster vaccine (Shingrix®): a new option for the prevention of herpes zoster and postherpetic neuralgia

Grisuna Singh1,2 , Sejin Song2 , Eunjoo Choi2 , Pyung-Bok Lee2,3 , Francis Sahngun Nahm2,3

1Department of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care, Nepalgunj Medical College and Teaching Hospital, Nepalgunj, Nepal
2Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Seongnam, Korea
3Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea

Correspondence to:Francis Sahngun Nahm
Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, 82 Gumi-ro 173beongil, Bundang-gu, Seongnam 13620, Korea
Tel: +82-31-787-7499
Fax: +82-31-787-4063
E-mail: hiitsme@hanmail.net

Received: March 5, 2020; Revised: April 15, 2020; Accepted: April 16, 2020

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/), which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Postherpetic neuralgia (PHN) is a challenging condition for pain management specialists. The prevention of herpes zoster (HZ) and subsequent PHN in individuals aged 50 years and older, via the development of new vaccines, is an ongoing research project. The live zoster vaccine (LZV, Zostavax®) was the first proof of concept that vaccination could prevent HZ, but LZV cannot be used in various immunecompromised patients. This led to the development of a new non-live recombinant zoster vaccine (RZV, Shingrix®). This RZV has shown promising results in many clinical trials, with high reactogenicity and similar systemic adverse effects compared to those of LZV. The National Advisory Committee on Immunization has recommended LZV as a standard vaccine for HZ prevention in adults ≥ 50 years of age, but no studies directly comparing the safety and efficacy of RZV and LZV vaccines have been conducted. This article reviews the brief history, efficacy, and safety of the two vaccines and discusses the advantage of RZV over LZV based on the available literature.

Keywords: Herpes Zoster, Herpes Zoster Vaccine, Immunity, Humoral, Neuralgia, Postherpetic, Pain, Vaccines, Attenuated, Vaccines, Subunit, Vaccines, Synthetic.