what is monkeypox, its symptoms and chances of human transmission
The World Health Organization (WHO) defines Monkeypox as a viral zoonotic disease caused by the monkeypox virus belongng to the same family of viruses which causes smallpox.
What are the origins of the Monkeypox virus and how common is it?
As per Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), monkeypox was first discovered in 1958 when two outbreaks of a pox-like disease occurred in colonies of monkeys kept for research. Hence the name ‘monkeypox.’
In humans, the first case of monkeypox was recorded in 1970 in Congo. Since then, the virus has remained majorly restricted to African nations.
Though, occasional cases have been reported in the US, UK, Singapore and Israel.
What are the symptoms of the Monkeypox disease?
Symptoms of monkeypox are similar but milder than that of smallpox. Monkeypox begins with fever, headache, muscle aches, and exhaustion.
Within 1 to 3 days (sometimes longer) after the appearance of fever, the patient develops a rash, often beginning on the face then spreading to other parts of the body. The illness typically lasts for 2−4 weeks.
How is Monkeypox transmitted?
Infection spreads from direct contact with the blood, bodily fluids of the infected animals. Eating inadequately cooked meat and other animal products of infected animals is a possible risk factor.
Human-to-human transmission is relatively limited. Infection 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
Curently, there is no specific treatment for monkeypox virus however, the smallpox vaccine has been demonstrated to be about 85% effective in preventing the disease.
Avoiding direct contact with infected humans or animals, isolation, good hand hygiene and using personal protective gears are some of the preventive measures.