In mid-June 2022, the WHO declared the recent monkeypox outbreak a global public health emergency, counting a total of 16,000 cases in multiple countries.
The cases of this disease were concentrated in certain countries in Central and West Africa, there is a collective bias that this is a “new” virus.
However, in this article we will explain its origins, symptoms and preventive measures.
What is Monkeypox?
It is a zoonosis caused by a virus of the genus orthopox, of the poxviridae family, that is, it is a disease transmitted between animals and humans. Although it was identified in primates during 1958, the evidence is not yet conclusive to support this premise, so its origin is still unknown.
Symptoms begin 2 to 3 days after infection. First, there are few specific symptoms such as fever, general malaise and extreme fatigue.
Then, a characteristic sign appears in the form of a skin rash on the face and body, consisting of raised lesions filled with clear or yellowish liquid, which may later form crusts.
The main sequelae are scars after the appearance of pustules.
What is the Phase of Highest Risk of Infection?
Although the number of monkeypox cases is not comparable to reported cases of COVID-19, without proper treatment it can result in death.
Close contact with an infected person can spread the virus. During the process of skin lesions appearing, those lesions become contagious “viral factories”, at the same time, respiratory secretions or objects that have been exposed to patients with the virus are also "carriers" of the disease.
Population at Higher Risk of Infection
The most vulnerable groups are pregnant women, immunosuppressed patients and the elderly. As for children, a low mortality rate has been described, deaths are 1 per 1000 cases for them.
Follow these steps as preventive methods...
Wash your hands constantly, especially if you have been in contact with infected animals or humans.
Avoid contact with clothing worn by an infected person.
Do not have direct contact with lesions or scabs on the patient's skin.
Keep your distance from an infected person who is coughing or sneezing.
Use disposable tissues in case of coughing and sneezing.
The main prevention measure is through vaccination against monkeypox, so our recommendation would be to approach the nearest vaccination center in your city to receive immunization against monkeypox and thus help prevent infection as well as control cases.