MonkeyPox – All You Need to Know

The time has come for nature to plot its revenge on humans for all the agony and exploitation we have caused her. The train of revenge is not stopping at all – First Covid-19 and its many variants and now, Monkeypox. 

So far, about 780 cases have been documented, with suspected cases being investigated. These occurrences occurred in 27 nations where the virus is spread with Spain being the worst affected. So far, no one has died as a result of the outbreak, which has been recorded in Spain, Canada, France, Germany, Belgium, Australia and more.

What is Monkeypox? – A zoonotic Disease?

  • Monkeypox is a member of the Orthopoxvirus genus in the Poxviridae family, which also contains the variola virus (which causes smallpox), the vaccinia virus (used in the smallpox vaccine), and cowpox virus. 
  • Monkeypox often produces fever, chills, rash, and sores on the face or genitals. According to WHO, up to one in every ten persons will die as a result of the disease.
  • According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC, US), while the natural reservoir of monkeypox is unknown, African rodents and nonhuman primates (such as monkeys) may harbour the virus and infect humans. 
  • The majority of human cases have occurred in central and west Africa, where the disease is widespread.

Monkeypox is a Transmissible Disease?

  • The virus enters the body via broken skin (even if it is not apparent), the respiratory tract, or mucous membranes (eyes, nose, or mouth).
  • Animal-to-human transmission can occur through a bite or scrape, the preparation of bushmeat (meat from wildlife species), direct touch with body fluids or lesion material, or indirect contact with lesion material, such as through contaminated bedding.
  • Human-to-human transmission is extremely rare.

Symptoms of Monkeypox:

  • Monkeypox is characterised by symptoms comparable to smallpox and begins with a fever. Headache, muscle aches, and tiredness are also possible. 
  • According to the CDC, the fundamental distinction between smallpox and monkeypox symptoms is that monkeypox causes lymph nodes to expand (lymphadenopathy), whereas smallpox does not.
  • The disease’s incubation period is generally 7 to 14 days, although it can be as short as 5 to 21 days. 
  • The rash starts 1 to 3 days after a fever begins on the face and spreads to other parts of the body. The sickness usually lasts 2 to 4 weeks.
  • Although in Africa, monkeypox has been reported to kill up to one in every ten people who develop the disease.

Treatment of Monkeypox:

  • People who have been infected with the virus are frequently given one of many smallpox vaccines that are effective against monkeypox.
  •  Antiviral medications are also being developed. 
  • All suspected cases should be isolated, and high-risk contacts should be administered the smallpox vaccine, according to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC).

Monkeypox scenario in India:

  • In India, no cases have been documented yet.
  • The Tamil Nadu government has urged district Collectors and Corporation Commissioners to monitor and identify potential monkeypox cases, as well as isolate patients at healthcare facilities for suitable treatment. People who have travelled in the last 21 days to a nation with confirmed or suspected monkeypox cases should be observed.
  • In Mumbai, an uncommon viral epidemic akin to smallpox has been confirmed. However, the Mumbai civic body issued health advice on May 23rd, stating that it had prepared a special 28-bed unit at Kasturba Hospital for the isolation of suspected patients.

Can the Monkeypox epidemic become a pandemic like Covid-19?

  • On May 7, the first European case was verified in an individual returning to England from Nigeria.
  • Scientists believe that the monkeypox outbreak will not become a pandemic like Covid-19 because the virus is not as easily disseminated as SARS-COV-2.
  • However, it is very unlikely that this epidemic will last long. The cases can be well isolated via contact tracing and there are also drugs and effective vaccines that can be used if necessary.
  • According to the WHO, the outbreak was uncommon, but it was still “containable.”

Monkeypox is a well-known illness that can be effectively treated using clinical medicines. Do not worry, and most importantly, do not confuse monkeypox with monkey fever, a common viral ailment found in Karnataka’s forest regions.

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