The past several years have provided exciting advances in the management of herpes zoster in the normal host. In spite of these advances, a significant portion of zoster patients still have persistent complications from this disease. Persistent pain is the most debilitating sequela and it occurs in at least 15% of individuals over 50 years of age. Future research efforts must embrace alternative approaches for pain control. Studies performed by the authors and reported in this article are funded in whole or in part with Federal funds from the National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NO-AI-65306), grants from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) CA RO-1-13148, the Division of Research Resources (DRR) RR-032, and the state of Alabama and an unrestricted grant in Infectious Diseases from Bristol Myers Squibb.