What is monkeypox and is there a cure?


What is monkeypox and is there a cure?

Image for article titled Great, should we be worried about monkeypox now?

photo: Cuson (Shutterstock)

Smallpox is the only disease we have ever completely eradicated from humans; Since 1980 they have not existed anywhere in the world. But its close relative, monkeypox, still exists. Monkeypox isn’t nearly as dangerous as smallpox, but some recent outbreaks have public health officials concerned.

In the past few weeks there have been 23 suspected cases in Spain, all in or near Madrid. There are 15 suspected cases and five confirmed cases in Portugal and seven cases in the UK cut off deathyes in the United States. The US CDC is affected.

That’s because monkeypox is typically rare outside of the tropical rainforest areas of Africa. But patterns in recent cases suggest the virus is more easily transmissible than in past outbreaks. For example, the UK cases include two groups of people who have not been in contact with each other and only one involves a person who had recently traveled to an area where monkeypox was endemic. It’s too early to tell if there’s potential for a pandemic here, but the pattern is emerging some of the red flags that are worrying health officials.

How bad is monkeypox?

Monkeypox is not as deadly as smallpox, but it is still dangerous. Mortality rates range from 0% to 11%, according to the World Health Organization. The better medical care you have access to, the better your chances of recovery.

Monkeypox hits children particularly hard. people over 50 or so less likely to get it because they lived during the smallpox eradication campaign. Vaccination against smallpox was common decades ago; If you’re young enough that you don’t have a smallpox vaccination scar on your arm, chances are your parents or grandparents do.

What are the symptoms of monkeypox?

With an incubation period of 5 to 21 days, you do not know immediately whether you have been infected. Once symptoms begin, there is an “invasion phase,“continuous about the first five days you may have fever, muscle pain, tiredness, severe headache and swollen lymph nodes. The swollen lymph nodes are one of the big differences between monkeypox and other infections like chickenpox.

Next comes the rash: You will get small lesions that start out flat and then get raised, with fluid and then pus inside. These are most common on the face (95% of the time) and the palms and soles (75% of the time). Other, similar diseases usually do not have lesions on the palms; this is a monkeypox special.

Overall, the illness lasts two to four weeks, then it gets better.

Is there a treatment or vaccine for monkeypox?

There is no specific treatment or medication for a person who has monkeypox. treatment is “supportive care” which can include things like keeping skin lesions clean, making sure your airway is clear, and giving medication to treat fever and secondary infections.

Here’s the good news: we to do have a vaccine. The smallpox vaccine that is still available appears to be effective against monkeypox.

How is monkeypox transmitted?

First a fun fact: IIt’s not usually from monkeys. Monkeypox got its name from an outbreak that occurred in monkeys, but scientists aren’t sure which animal or animals are most common carry the virus. Rodents are likely involved, and primates such as monkeys and humans are also susceptible.

According to the WHO, the virus is transmitted through “contact with lesions, body fluids, respiratory droplets, and contaminated materials such as bedding.” There are suspicions that one of the UK’s clusters of cases may result from sexual transmission.

Usually, the virus doesn’t spread very well from person to person; the WHO reports that the longest identified transmission chain six people involved. But if the recent outbreaks are more transmissible than before, that could change. Masks can help as respiratory droplets are one of the routes of transmission (and unlike COVID, monkeypox is intended only to be disseminated big droplets, and no aerosols).

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