Shingles explained as condition forces Holly Willoughby to take time off

The infection is caused by the same virus as chickenpox and means the This Morning presenter will be off for 'a few days'.

What is shingles as chickenpox virus forces Holly Willoughby to take time off from ITV This Morning This Morning

Holly Willoughby has been forced to take time off from presenting This Morning after coming down with shingles.

The talk show host has been away during the Easter holidays along with co-presenter Phillip Schofield – who is due to return this week.

In an Instagram post, Willoughby wrote: “Hi… Just to let you know I may be away for the rest of the week as I have shingles… I’ll be back as soon as I’m better. Huge love, Holly.”

Shingles is an infection caused by the same virus as chickenpox.

It produces a painful rash on the chest or abdomen but it can appear anywhere on the body, according to the NHS.

Typically, it last around two to four weeks.

The NHS says that while most people have chickenpox in childhood, after the illness has gone the varicella-zoster virus remains dormant.

It is kept in check by your immune system, but it can be reactivated later in life causing shingles – and it isn’t known exactly why this happens.

It’s not possible to catch shingles from someone with the condition or from someone with chickenpox. However, you can catch chickenpox from someone with shingles if you haven’t had chickenpox before.

TV personality Alison Hammond and former The X Factor presenter Dermot O’Leary step in to cover Willoughby and Schofield when they are off.

On Monday, This Morning said The Hit List presenter and former The Saturdays singer Rochelle Humes will be in the studio alongside Schofield to host.

The talk show wrote on social media: “Tomorrow at 10am on ITV1 and STV, it’s welcome back after the Easter holidays to Phillip and get better soon to Holly who’s off ill for a few days.

“Phillip and Rochelle have a packed show… and a very special live announcement from Alison Hammond around midday.”

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