The same virus that causes chickenpox causes shingles. After a person has had chickenpox, the virus lives in an inactive state in the body. The virus can become active again years later, leading to shingles. You can't catch shingles from another person; however, in rare cases a person can get chickenpox if exposed to someone with shingles. This can happen if the exposed person has never had chickenpox or the chickenpox vaccine.