This state of concern began to spread after health authorities in Europe, America, Australia, and Canada monitored a number of cases of viral “monkeypox” in recent days. This is the first time that the disease has spread among people who have not traveled to Africa
What is monkeypox?
- Monkeypox belongs to the same family of viruses that cause smallpox, but it causes milder symptoms; Most patients have a fever, body aches, chills, and fatigue, and affected people, with a more severe level of the disease, may develop a rash and blisters on the face and hands that can spread to other parts of the body.
- Monkeypox is a rare and zoonotic viral disease (the virus is transmitted from animals to humans) and the symptoms of human infection are similar to those seen in the past in patients with smallpox, but it is less severe. Although smallpox was eradicated in 1980, monkeypox still occurs sporadically in some parts of Africa.
Virus incubation period
The incubation period for the virus (the period between infection and symptoms) that causes these infections is about five days to three weeks, and most people recover within two to four weeks without the need for hospitalization, but monkeypox can be fatal in up to It affects up to 1 in 10 people and is thought to be more severe in children, pregnant women and those with weakened immune systems.
It ranges from the moment of infection to 5 days, and its most prominent features are fever, severe headache, swollen lymph nodes, back and muscle pain, and severe weakness.
The period of appearance of the rash:
- It takes place within a period ranging between 1 and 3 days after infection, and one of its most prominent features is the appearance of the rash that begins on the face, most often, and then spreads to other parts of the body, and the rash is most severe on the face ( In 95% of cases) and on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet (75%), the rash develops in about 10 days from flat-based spots to small fluid-filled vesicles, pustules and the next stage of development, and may take up to three weeks to disappear completely.
- Before the rash appears, some patients may develop large lymph nodes, a feature of monkeypox that distinguishes it from other similar diseases.
How is monkeypox diagnosed?
It may be difficult to diagnose monkeypox because of the great similarity between it and smallpox, but the diagnosis is made through a physical examination by a specialized doctor, in addition to conducting some tests and laboratory analyzes to verify the type of virus that causes the disease.
Monkeypox virus treatment
People exposed to the virus are often given one of several vaccines against smallpox, which have also been shown to be effective against monkeypox, and antiviral drugs are being developed, and the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control recommended, last Thursday, the isolation of all suspected cases and the introduction of a vaccine Smallpox for high-risk contacts.
- Avoid contact with infected animals and any instruments that have been touched by a sick animal
- Isolate patients infected with the virus from others at risk of infection
- Wash your hands with soap and water or use hand sanitizer
- Use personal protective equipment such as masks and gloves when caring for patients
- Take veterinary measures for infected animals
Sources and references
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