(HealthDay News) — In an 8-7 vote, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices has recommended that Shingrix be chosen over Zostavax as the herpes zoster vaccine of choice in adults aged 50 and older.

Previously, vaccination had been recommended only for those aged 60 and older. The panel went even further and recommended that anyone who has been vaccinated with the Zostavax vaccine be re-vaccinated with the Shingrix vaccine, the Washington Post reported. In total, more than 40 million people will be affected by the new recommendations.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration had just approved Shingrix last Friday based on a study from its maker, GlaxoSmithKline. That research found Shingrix protected about 90% of patients, but Zostavax protected only 50% of patients. Shingrix requires 2 shots, while Zostavax requires only 1 shot.

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“This represents a major advance for people who want to be protected against the disease and its complications,” Kathleen Dooling, MD, MPH, a medical officer with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, told the Post.

Reference

Sun, L. Expert panel recommends new shingles vaccine that gives increased protection. Washington Post. 25 Oct 2017. Accessible at: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/to-your-health/wp/2017/10/25/expert-panel-recommends-new-shingles-vaccine-that-gives-increased-protection/?utm_term=.acab6126f86b