“Biggest monkeypox outbreak ever seen in Europe”: warning from health authorities

A strange virus is spreading. Appearance monkeypox case in England on May 7 he set off the alarm. With each passing day, the disease started to spread and at least 80 cases have been identified in 14 countries. In addition, an oddity was detected: sexual intercourse appears to play an important role in transmission.

The UK reported 20 confirmed cases on Friday. Added to this, in Spain, Portugal, Italy, Canada, United States, Australia, Sweden, France, Belgium and Germany the disease is also detected; and this Saturday they join the list Israel and Switzerland with the first confirmed case.

Monkeypox virus particles

Although he didn’t mention any country, World Health Organization (WHO) reported that another 50 suspected cases were being investigated and warned that it might More infections will be noted.

WHO works on the hypothesis that outbreaks are driven by sexual contact, told Reuters David Hayman, Chair of the WHO Strategic and Technical Advisory Group on Infectious Hazards with Pandemic and Epidemic Potential.

“With several confirmed cases in the UK, Spain and Portugal, This is the largest and most widespread outbreak of monkeypox ever seen in Europe.” said the medical service of the German armed forces.

According to BBC Health correspondent James Gallagher, it was an “unusual and unprecedented outbreak of monkeypox that shocked scientists specializing in the disease.” “It is always a concern when a virus changes its behavior. So far, monkeypox is quite predictable,” he said.

Symptoms of monkeypox include rash, fever, headache, muscle aches, backache, swollen lymph nodes, chills, and fatigue.
Symptoms of monkeypox include rash, fever, headache, muscle aches, backache, swollen lymph nodes, chills, and fatigue.Science Photo Library

However, usually, This rare infection is mild and most people recover within a few weeks, according to health authorities. Viruses do not spread easily between humans and the risk to society is generally considered low.

Yeah OK there are no specially developed vaccines against monkeypox, some countries use humanpox injection because it offers 85 percent protection because the two viruses are very similar.

British authorities reported that they bought smallpox vaccine and started offering it to people with “higher level of exposure” for monkey pox.

Other countries, such as Spain, are evaluating it. The European country on Saturday laid out a protocol for those infected that included self-isolation at home – only going to the doctor – and wearing a mask. Those who are close contacts of an infected person should not self-isolate, but they are asked to reduce social interaction to a minimum and tested.

Monkeypox is caused by the virus of the same name, a member of the smallpox virus family.

This electron microscope image provided Wednesday, May 18, 2022, by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows oval-shaped adult monkeypox virions (left) and round immature virions (right), obtained from human skin samples related to the 2003 outbreak. ( Cynthia S. Goldsmith, Russell Regner/CDC via AP)
This electron microscope image provided Wednesday, May 18, 2022, by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows oval-shaped adult monkeypox virions (left) and round immature virions (right), obtained from human skin samples related to the 2003 outbreak. ( Cynthia S. Goldsmith, Russell Regner/CDC via AP)

“Monkey pox are zoonotic – diseases that are transmitted from animals to humans – of the sylvatic type, with inadvertent human infection, generally occurs sporadically in forest areas of central and western Africa,” the Pan American Health Organization’s (PAHO) disease prevention and control adviser, an epidemiologist, told a news conference on Wednesday. Henry Perez.

“It’s caused by a virus, the smallpox virus, and it belongs to the family of viruses that are orthopoxviruses,” he explained. And he adds: “It manifests itself with pustular eruptions (pus-filled pimples) and it’s a systemic disease that can vary from a mild form (…) to a more serious disease and including death“.

In Africa, the case fatality rate is between 4 and 22 percent, and most patients are children. “What do we suggest? Any illness that occurs while traveling to or returning from an endemic area should be reported to a healthcare professional, also includes travel information and recent vaccination history,” he said.

“People residing or tourists going to endemic countries should always avoid contact with sick animalswhich can harbor the smallpox virus,” said Pérez.

Two of the infected patients in the UK traveled from Nigeria, so they most likely have West African strain of the virus, which is usually mild.

Countries that have recorded cases of monkeypox until 2021.
Countries that have recorded cases of monkeypox until 2021.WHO

The third case is a health worker who contracted the virus from a patient. The following four cases, three in London and one in northeast England, have no known relationship to one another and have no travel history.

The UK’s Health Safety Agency said anyone concerned they might be infected should see a health professional.

Early symptoms include: fever, headache, swelling, back pain, muscle aches and general lethargy.

After the fever subsides, rashwhich often begins on the face and then spreads to other parts of the body, most commonly the palms of the hands and soles of the feet.

A rash, which can cause many things itchchange and go through various stages before finally forming Crustwhich then fell. Injuries can cause scarring.

The infection usually goes away on its own and lasts two to four weeks. Most cases are mild, sometimes resembling chickenpox.

Symptoms of monkeypox include rash, fever, headache, muscle aches, backache, swollen lymph nodes, chills, and fatigue.
Symptoms of monkeypox include rash, fever, headache, muscle aches, backache, swollen lymph nodes, chills, and fatigue.Science Photo Library

Monkeypox can spread when someone enters close contact with an infected person. Pérez, from PAHO, said it was transmitted through large droplets are exhaled. It can enter the body through broken skin, airways, or eyes, nose, or mouth, and has the incubation period is 6 to 13 days, although it can be up to 21 days.

That virus excretion through feces can also be a route of transmission of the virus. Although it is called “monkeypox”, this disease is also transmitted by rodents, marsupials, and other primates. PAHO notes that the population “You should avoid handling animals.”

It can also be shared by contact with infected animals or objects contaminated with the virus, like clothes.

This virus was first identified in captive monkeys and since 1970 sporadic outbreaks have been reported in 10 African countries.

In 2003 there was an outbreak in the United States, the first time the disease was seen outside of Africa. The patients contracted the disease through close contact with rodents that had been infected by small mammals – mice, rats and squirrels – imported from Africa.

A total of 81 cases were reported, but none resulted in death. In 2017, Nigeria experienced the largest documented outbreak, some 40 years after the country had its last confirmed case of monkeypox. There were 172 suspected cases and 75% of the victims were men aged between 21 and 40 years.

A historic vaccination campaign, especially in less resourced areas, succeeded in eradicating smallpox in 1980.
A historic vaccination campaign, especially in less resourced areas, succeeded in eradicating smallpox in 1980.Getty Images

This year, Nigeria registered 46 suspected cases, 15 of which were confirmed, according to the WHO. There is no treatment for monkeypox, but outbreaks can be controlled by preventing infection.

In Africa, yes. From 2016 to date, more cases were detected than in the previous 40 years, according to Raúl Rivas González, professor of Microbiology at the University of Salamanca (Spain), in an article published in Conversation.

Regarding the reasons for this revival, Rivas González marks four reasons:

British experts say they are nowhere near a local outbreak and, according to the UK’s public health office, the risk to the population is low.

Jonathan Ball, Professor of Molecular Virology at the University of Nottingham, said: “The fact that only one in 50 contacts of the initial patient was infected with monkeypox shows how bad the virus infection is.

Nick Phin, deputy director of the National Infection Service at the UK’s public health office, added: “It is important to stress that monkeypox is not easy to spread between humans and the risk to the general public is very low.”

Stuart Martin

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