• Zoster (Shingles)
  • Vaccine Recommendations

What zoster vaccine is available in the United States?

Recombinant zoster vaccine (RZV, Shingrix, GlaxoSmithKline) was licensed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in October 2017. It is a subunit vaccine that contains recombinant varicella zoster virus (VZV) glycoprotein E in combination with a novel adjuvant (AS01B). Shingrix does not contain live VZV. It is FDA-approved and recommended by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) for all people 50 years and older and for adults age 19 years or older who are or will be immunodeficient or immunosuppressed because of disease or therapy. It has not been evaluated and is not approved for the prevention of primary varicella infection. Shingrix is administered as a 2-dose series by the intramuscular route. The second dose should be given 2 to 6 months after the first dose, with a minimum interval of 1 month (4 weeks) between doses.

Zoster vaccine live (ZVL, Zostavax, Merck) is a live attenuated vaccine that was licensed by the FDA in 2006 for adults age 50 and older and recommended by ACIP for people age 60 and older. Zostavax has been unavailable for use in the United States since November 18, 2020.

Last reviewed: March 9, 2022

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