Monkeypox is an infectious disease caused by the monkeypox virus . The disease was first identified in laboratory monkeys, hence its name, but in its natural state it seems to infect rodents more often than primates .
The virus was first discovered in monkeys (hence the name) in 1958, and in humans in 1970. Between 1970 and 1986, over 400 cases in humans were reported.
The disease is indigenous to Central and West Africa .
An outbreak that occurred in the United States in 2003 was traced to a pet store where imported Gambian pouched rats were sold.
Small viral outbreaks with a death rate in the range of 10% and a secondary human to human infection rate of about the same amount occur routinely in equatorial Central and West Africa.
The primary route of infection is thought to be contact with the infected animals or their bodily fluids.
The virus can spread both from animal to human and from human to human. Infection from animal to human can occur via an animal bite or by direct contact with an infected animal’s bodily fluids.
The virus can spread from human to human by both respiratory (airborne) contact and contact with infected person's bodily fluids.
Risk factors for transmission include sharing a bed, room, or using the same utensils as an infected patient.
Incubation period is 10–14 days. Prodromal symptoms include swelling of lymph nodes, muscle pain, headache,fever , prior to the emergence of the rash .
The rashes firstappear on the face before spreading to other parts of the body.
It can cause severe illness and quick deaths, especially in children.
Currently, there is no treatment for monkeypox, but its outbreak can be prevented and controlled.
Close physical contact with monkeypox infected people should be avoided.
Gloves and protective equipment should be worn when taking care of ill people.
Regular hand washing should be a top priority at all times.
Ensure that you thoroughly cook all animal products (blood, meat) before eating.
Gloves and other appropriate protective clothing should be worn while handling sick animals or their infected tissues, and during slaughtering procedures.
Samples taken from people and animals with suspected monkeypox virus infection should be handled by trained personnels .
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