During the past months, the number of cases of Monkeypox victims have been rising. In the data received by the WHO, from January 2022 to August 2022, 31,800 cases were confirmed on Aug. 9, 2022. That includes 9 deaths from 83 member states in six World Health Organization Regions. The nine fatal cases were from Brazil (1), India (1), Nigeria (3), Spain (2), and the Central African Republic (2). As of august 2, there have been 64% (15,926 cases in 38 countries) of the confirmed cases were in the European regions of the WHO; 35% (8,644 cases in 20 countries and territories) in the American Regions, only 1.4% (349 cases in 9 countries) in the African regions, less than 1% (67 cases in 8 countries) in the Western Pacific Region, Less than 1% in the Eastern Mediterranean Region, and also less than 1% (8 cases in 2 countries) in the South East Asian Region of the WHO member nations. An increase of 33.5% and 70% in reported number of cases globally and in the WHO regions in Americas, respectively. Which also during the same period, an increase of 20% in the South-east Asia Region, 15% in the European Region, 9% in the African Region, 8% in the Western Pacific Region, and 4% in the Eastern Mediterranean Region of the WHO member countries. (Note: the data may change overtime)
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have been tracking this outbreak and they have found out that most cases have been spread through close, intimate contact with someone who has monkeypox. There have been steps to prevent getting monkeypox and lower the risk during sex. That is by getting vaccinated. But, because of the limited supply of vaccines, they urge people to consider changing some behaviors that may increase the risk of being exposed. These changes may help slow the spread of the virus. The CDC urges our health workers here in the US to be vigilant and alert for patients having the rash illnesses consistent with monkeypox.
Below are the key Characteristics for identifying monkeypox.
- Lesions are firm or rubbery, well-circumscribed, deep-seated, and often develop umbilication (resembles a dot on the top of the lesion)
- During the global outbreak:
- Lesions often occur in the genital areas or the mouth.
- Rash is not always disseminated across many sites on the body.
- Rash may be confined to only a few lesions or only a single lesion.
- Rash does not always appear on palms and soles.
- Rectal symptoms (e.g., purulent or bloody stools, rectal pain, or rectal bleeding) have been frequently reported in the current outbreak.
- Lesions are often described as painful until the healing phase when they become itchy (crusts)
- Fever and other symptoms ( e.g., chills, lymphadenopathy, malaise, myalgias, or headache) can occur before rash but may occur after rash or not be present at all.
- Respiratory symptoms (e.g., sore throat, nasal congestion, or cough) can occur.
If ever you feel you have any of these symptoms, contact your nearest health care workers to help control this virus.