- Earlier this month, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the recent monkeypox outbreak a global health emergency.
- There are more than 16,000 reported cases of monkeypox in 75 countries and territories.
- Monkeypox has a current mortality rate of between 3-6%.
- A recent study found that 95% of monkey pox cases between April and June 2022 occurred during sex between men.
- There are currently two vaccines available to help protect against monkeypox.
On July 23, 2022, WHO’s Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus
According to the official press statement from Dr. Tedros, this decision stems from the current monkey pox outbreak that is growing to
“I welcome the decision of the WHO director to declare the current global monkeypox outbreak to be PHEIC,” said Dr. Boghuma K. Titanji, assistant professor of medicine at Emory University. “The criteria for making monkeypox a PHEIC have been met for several weeks.”
“I hope this will raise the international priority level for monkeypox and stimulate a more coordinated global response, which has unfortunately been lacking until now,” she continues.
“It is also an opportunity to set things straight in terms of global health equity and access to resources such as testing, vaccination, antiviral drugs, etc. These are areas where we have seen many failures historically, leaving countries with limited resources. .”
– dr. Boghuma K. Titanji
Monkeypox is a
The disease belongs to the Orthopoxvirus genus of viruses, which also includes smallpox. Therefore, the symptoms are generally similar to, but not as severe as, those of smallpox.
Medical clinicians found the first cases of monkeypox in 1958 during two outbreaks in monkeys kept for research.
Researchers registered the
The first monkeypox outbreak outside Africa occurred
As mentioned earlier, monkeypox is a virus that is transmitted from infected animals to humans. Transmission of the virus from an animal to a human occurs by:
- being bitten or scratched by an infected animal
- eating meat or using products from an animal with monkey pox
- come into contact with the bodily fluids of an infected animal.
Once a human becomes infected with monkey pox, they can transmit the virus to another human by:
- respiratory droplets with prolonged face-to-face contact
- intimate physical contact, including kissing and intercourse
- directly touching an infected person’s contagious rash or bodily fluids
- touching clothing, bedding, and other materials that have come into contact with an infected person’s rash or bodily fluids.
Because monkeypox is spread through close contact between people, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC)
A recently published study in the New England Journal of Medicine found that between April and June 2022, 98% of individuals with monkeypox infection were gay or bisexual males, and 95% of monkeypox cases were through sexual transmission.
So is monkeypox a sexually transmitted disease (STD)?
Not so, according to Prof. Piero Olliaro, director of clinical research at the Epidemic Diseases Research Group Oxford (ERGO) and International Severe Acute Respiratory and Emerging Infections Consortium (ISARIC).
He stressed that it is important to remember that monkey pox is transmitted in several ways through close contact. That includes intercourse, but that’s not the only mode of transmission.
While the virus doesn’t just circulate through sexual intercourse, the fact that it can be transmitted through respiratory droplets means it can be more easily transmitted between members of close-knit communities, such as LGBTQIA+ communities.
“The fact that the current outbreak in non-endemic countries – so far – has mainly involved men who have sex with men means that the involvement and buy-in of the LGBTQ+ community is essential,” Prof. Olliaro said. also. Medical news today.
“This has proven to work in other similar circumstances to help identify what would work, and make it possible to break the transmission chains,” he added.
If a person becomes infected with monkeypox, the incubation period before they start showing symptoms is between 5 and 21 days.
Most people experience two sets of monkeypox symptoms. The first symptoms appear about 5 days and include:
A rash normally appears on the person infected with monkey pox a few days after a fever. The rash looks like pimples or blisters and can appear on many parts of the body, including:
- soles of the feet
- in the mouth
- genitals and/or anus.
Symptoms normally last between two to four weeks. Monkeypox currently has a death rate of
Disease treatment normally involves medications to treat certain symptoms.
The public health authorities that have approved TPOXX for the treatment of monkeypox infections to date are the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and the Medicines and Health Product Regulation Agency (MHRA) in the United Kingdom.
In the United States, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Tecovirimat for the
For that reason, the CDC has a non-research protocol with extended access to Investigational New Drug (EA-IND) that allows clinicians to use tecovirimat to
“The US has 1.7 million courses of TPOXX in the strategic national stockpile,” Dr. Hruby MNT. “It is distributed by the CDC under an EA IND for the treatment of monkeypox. SIGA has donated small amounts of tecovirimat to the UK for use in the most severe cases.”
The EMA recently recommended the use of Imvanex to help protect adults against monkey pox.
The JYNNEOS vaccine involves two injections, with people considered fully vaccinated about 2 weeks after the second injection.
The second vaccine
The ACAM2000 vaccine involves only one injection and considers a person vaccinated approximately 4 weeks later. In addition, clinicians recommend that certain populations receive the ACAM2000 vaccine, including:
While vaccination is important, Prof. Olliaro emphasized that it may not be the complete solution.
“Vaccination alone may not work unless supported by other measures — including the ability to diagnose and treat early,” he stressed.
Medical professionals suggest that people take the following steps to prevent the spread of monkeypox:
- avoid intimate and skin-to-skin contact with a person who has a rash similar to that of monkey pox
- try not to touch bedding, clothing, or other materials that have touched a person with monkey pox
- wash hands regularly with soap and water
- In certain African regions, stay away from known carriers of monkeypox and do not touch sick or dead animals.