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Who is at highest risk for complications from Shingles vaccine?

Updated February 10, 2023

vaccine complications

Persons who are allergic to any ingredient of the SHINGRIX vaccine, or a previous vaccine dose, and who receive a dose of the vaccine are at high risk of complications. Additionally, persons vaccinated with SHINGRIX while ill with shingles, or with another illness may also be at high risk for complications. Persons who have no prior history of chickenpox and women who are pregnant or breastfeeding may also be at high of complications by receiving SHINGRIX vaccination.1

Individuals who are allergic to any of the ingredients of ZOSTAVAX such as gelatin, or neomycin, are at risk of complications if they receive the vaccine. Persons who are immunocompromised or immune suppressed, and pregnant and breastfeeding women are also at risk of complication by receiving ZOSTAVAX vaccine.2

IMPORTANT NOTE: NVIC encourages you to become fully informed about Shingles and the Shingles vaccine by reading all sections in the Table of Contents , which contain many links and resources such as the manufacturer product information inserts, and to speak with one or more trusted health care professionals before making a vaccination decision for yourself or your child. This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended as medical advice.



[1] U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Who Should Not Get Shingrix? In: Shingles Vaccination. Jan. 25, 2018.

[2] Merck & Co., Inc Package Insert - Zostavax (Frozen). U.S. Food and Drug Administration Dec. 26, 2019.

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