Everything You Need To Know About The Rare Virus, Monkeypox

Undated photo currently posted on the website of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows a child affected with monkeypox. (Courtesy of CDC)
Undated photo currently posted on the website of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows a child affected with monkeypox. (Courtesy of CDC)

On May 6, 2022, an ongoing monkeypox outbreak in England was confirmed, beginning with a British resident who, after traveling to Nigeria, presented symptoms consistent with monkeypox on April 29, 2022.

The resident returned to the United Kingdom on May 4, becoming the outbreak’s index case in the country.

According to CNN, there have been 550 confirmed cases in 30 countries worldwide.

Monkeypox, according to the WHO, is a viral zoonotic disease (a virus transmitted to humans from animals) with symptoms similar to those seen in smallpox patients in the past, though it is clinically less severe.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there were 47 confirmed and probable cases of monkeypox in the United States in 2003, spread across six states. Those who got monkeypox got it after coming into contact with prairie dogs that were being sold as pets.

The 2003 outbreak in the United States was the first time human monkeypox was reported outside of the African continent. There were no deaths or reported human-to-human transmissions.
Fortunately, the mortality rate is low, ranging from 1 to 10%, and is especially low with the most recent strain to appear on the scene.

Direct contact with infected animals’ blood, bodily fluids, or cutaneous or mucosal lesions can result in animal-to-human (zoonotic) transmission.

Evidence of monkeypox virus infection has been found in many animals in Africa, including rope squirrels, tree squirrels, Gambian poached rats, dormice, various species of monkeys, and others.

People who live in or near forested areas may have indirect or low-level exposure to infected animals.

Human-to-human transmission can result from close contact with respiratory secretions, skin lesions of an infected person, or recently contaminated objects. Transmission via droplet respiratory particles usually requires prolonged face-to-face contact, which puts health workers, household members, and other close contacts of active cases at greater risk. However, the longest documented chain of transmission in a community has risen in recent years from 6 to 9 successive person-to-person infections.

The incubation period for monkeypox is typically 6 to 13 days, but it can range from 5 to 21 days.
There are two stages to the infection:

The skin eruption usually appears 1–3 days after the fever appears. The rash is more common on the face and extremities than on the trunk.

Virus interaction prevention (including health care workers without appropriate PPE)
Contact with contaminated materials such as clothing or bedding, including sexual contact, should be monitored.

Is there any monkeypox in Ghana?
On May 25, 2022, the Ghana health service issued a press release signed by the Western regional director of health services, Dr. Yaw Ofori Yeboah, debunking alleged reports of a monkeypox outbreak in the Western Region.

“There have been no cases of monkeypox reported in the Western region.” A person with blisters reported to a facility in the Ahanta West Municipality of the Western Region. The initial evaluation of the case does not point to monkeypox. “More research is being conducted.” Parts of the press release stated

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