Monkeypox: Rare disease explained
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Although the UK is not alone in detecting these cases, Spain has recently reported 23 patients with the condition, there is concern over the undetected transmission in the UK.
The United States’ Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said in a statement: “We do have a level of concern that this is very different than what we typically think of from monkeypox.
“And we have some concern that there could be spread outside the UK associated with this.”
Early symptoms of monkeypox include:
• Muscle aches
• Swollen lymph nodes
Unlike coronavirus, monkeypox does not spread easily between humans.
The virus is normally transmitted through large respiratory droplets.
The CDC said: “Respiratory droplets generally cannot travel more than a few feet, so prolonged face-to-face contact is required.
“Other human-to-human methods of transmission include direct body contact with body fluids or lesion material, and indirect contact with lesion material, such as through contaminated clothing or linens.”
Due to the close proximity required for transmission, there was concern monkeypox could be transmitted through sexual contact.
However, Dr Michael Head of the University of Southampton said: “There is no evidence that it is a sexually transmitted virus, such as HIV.
“It’s more that there is close contact during sexual or intimate activity, including prolonged skin-to-skin contact, [which] may be the key factor during transmission.”
Nevertheless, the UK Health Security Agency is encouraging LGBTQ+ men to be on the look out for unusual rashes or lesions.
Despite monkeypox spreading, there is currently no reason to be alarmed, say health officials.
Hepatitis is a condition where the liver becomes inflamed and is usually the result of a viral infection.
On the outbreak the NHS has said: “The number of cases of hepatitis in children has increased recently.
“Public health doctors and scientists are looking into what could be causing this.
“Good hygiene, including supervising hand washing in young children, can help to prevent infections that can cause hepatitis.”
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