what is monkeypox

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where we will take a quick look at monkeypox – what it is, how it was named, the symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention. Monkeypox is a disease caused by the monkeypox virus.

a viral disease affecting rodents and primates in rainforest areas of west and central Africa, related to smallpox and sometimes transmitted to humans.

monkeypox

The virus belongs to a group of viruses called Orthopox-viruses. This group also includes the variola virus, which causes smallpox, and the cowpox virus Monkeypox was first discovered in Denmark in 1958 when monkeys kept for research developed a pox-like disease characterized by skin eruptions. And that’s how the disease got its name.

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Monkeypox

a monkeypox case

The first human monkeypox case was reported in the Democratic Republic of Congo in 1970. Since then, numerous cases have been reported from countries across Central and West Africa. Cases outside these countries have usually been associated with travel from those regions However, recent cases have occurred with no travel history.

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spreading chart

how it is transmitted

Let’s have a look at how it is transmitted…. Monkeypox is a zoonotic disease, which means that is a disease of animals that can be transmitted to humans Although the virus can be carried in many animals such as squirrels, rodents, and different species of monkeys, the natural reservoir of this virus has not yet been determined. The likely way it is transmitted to humans is through direct or indirect contact with infected animals.

This could be through a bite or scratch, during preparation or eating inadequately cooked animals that are infected, or by direct contact with blood or bodily fluids of infected animals. It can be transmitted from person to person through face-to-face contact through respiratory droplets, contact with body fluids of an infected person such as from skin lesions, or from Objects contaminated with the virus such as bedding. Family members, sexual partners, or anyone with close physical contact, and health workers are at higher risk The virus can also be passed from the mother to the fetus through the placenta.

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symptoms

what are the symptoms?

So, what are the symptoms? The incubation period, which is the time from infection to when symptoms appear is usually from 6 to 13 days but can range from 5 to 21 days. The disease usually starts with a fever, headache, muscle aches, back pain, and lack of energy. A characteristic feature is the swelling of lymph nodes A widespread rash develops, usually starting on the face and spreading to the rest of the body.

The rash starts out as macules – lesions with a flat base progressing to pustules which Are raised lesions filled with yellowish fluid These later crusts and the scabs fall off eventually. The illness usually gets better on its own after about 2 to 4 weeks However, complications can occur such as secondary bacterial infection, encephalitis, pneumonia, sepsis, and corneal infection which may lead to loss of vision. Children and those who are immune suppressed have worse outcomes. The case fatality ratio, which is the proportion of people who die from the disease ranges from around 3 to 6 percent.

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how Monkeypox is diagnosed?

So how is diagnosed? Polymerase Chain Reaction – PCR testing, which detects the genetic fingerprint of the virus is the best test to diagnose the disease. This is usually done on samples from skin lesions such as fluid or crusts. Testing blood for antibodies against monkeypox is sometimes used, but because antibodies Cross-react with other related viruses, it is of limited value.

how do we treat monkeypox?

And how do we treat monkeypox? The mainstay of treating monkeypox is to provide supportive care and prevent or manage any complications. One antiviral has recently been approved in some countries for treating monkeypox. Other antivirals and therapeutics such as immunoglobulins are currently being evaluated.

How about prevention?

How about prevention? Prevention activities include raising awareness of the disease including risk factors. and public health measures such as surveillance to identify cases, isolating those who are sick, and effective contact tracing. Practicing adequate infection control measures is essential when caring for patients with the disease and handling samples.

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vaccines for Monkeypox

There are several vaccines developed for smallpox that are also effective against monkeypox. There is a new vaccine that has been approved for the prevention of monkeypox that’s a quick look at monkeypox, a re-emerging infectious disease of public health importance.

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