Monkey pox: Risk factors, Signs and Symptoms

Monkeypox, a rare viral zoonosis  is a virus transmitted to humans from animals with symptoms in humans similar to those seen in...

Friday, 6 October 2017

Facts about Monkey pox

Monkey pox

 

1. Double stranded DNA virus (Zoonotic)

  • Family poxviridae, Genus orthopoxvirus
  • Family of pox viruses includes other viruses like chicken pox or the eradicated small pox.

2. History

  • 1958: First identified in laboratory monkey kept for research
  • 1970: First human case was identified in DR Congo
  • 1985: First isolation in nature, in an ailing rope squirrel in DR Congo
  • 2003: First human infection outside Africa documented in USA

3. Transmission

  • From infected animals or humans
  • Following contact with body fluids/materials of animals or infected humans
  • Following bite, scratch or even bush meat preparation
  • Entry via broken skin or mucosa (skin, respiratory tract, mucus membrane eye, nose, mouth).
  • Shared utensils, bed, room etc increase risk of transmission

4. Incubation period

  • Seven to fourteen days commonly but could extend from five to twenty-one days.

5. Signs and symptoms

  • Similar to small pox but milder
  • Fever, chills, drenching night sweats, headache
  • Muscles aches (backache), Exhaustion-Lymph-nodes swell up (absent in small pox)

6. Case definition

  • Designed to detect single cases followed by immediate response and control efforts: Fever followed by rash (vesicular/pustular) with rash on palm, soles and face or 5 various-like scars
  • Designed for use in the context of disease surveillance to elaborate on burden in endemic areas: Individual with vesicular/pustular eruptions with at least one of the symptoms: fever preceding eruptions, lymphadenopathy and/or pustules/crust on the palms of the hands or sole of the feet

7. After 1-10 days

  • Centrifugal rash: Rash macule-papule-vesicles-pustules-umbilical-then crusted (scab)

8. Case fatality

  • One to ten percent die from this infection

9. Prevention

  • Small pox vaccine (for at-risk workers) which can be given up to 14 days post exposure
  • Hygiene (Hand washing) with soap and water or alcohol based sanitizer
  • Avoid ill or dead animals’ suspects or their materials
  • Isolation of suspects or identified cases
  • Use personal protective equipment when caring for patients (for health workers)

10. Treatment and vaccine

  • There are no specific treatments or vaccines available for monkey pox infection, but outbreaks can be controlled. Vaccination against smallpox has been proven to be 85% effective in preventing monkey pox in the past but the vaccine is no longer available to the general public after it was discontinued following global smallpox eradication.


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