A Patient in England Has Been Diagnosed With Monkeypox

A person in England has been diagnosed with the rare viral infection monkeypox, Public Health England (PHE) has said.

The patient is believed to have contracted the infection while visiting Nigeria and is currently being treated at the specialist high consequence infectious disease centre at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust in London.
A Patient in England Has Been Diagnosed With  Monkeypox

Close contacts of the patient, including those who travelled in close proximity to them on the flight from Nigeria to the UK, are being contacted. PHE said monkeypox ‘is a rare viral infection that does not spread easily between people and the risk to the general public in England is very low.
A Patient in England Has Been Diagnosed With  Monkeypox

Monkeypox is an extremely rare disease, and is zoonotic, so is normally seen in animals. It can, however, be transferred to humans – so here’s everything that you need to know about the illness: First of all, although Monkeypox is rare, it’s usually a mild condition and unlikely to spread – so there’s no need to panic. It’s also an orthopoxvirus.

Although it’s not a descendent of smallpox, it has similar symptoms (although they’re milder and there’s a lower death rate). It’s most commonly seen in monkeys and rodents, but has been known to be passed to humans. There was an outbreak in the US in 2003, which was as a result of a giant Gambian rats. The illness can be spread by touching items like clothing, bedding or towels used by an infected person, touching monkeypox spots or scabs, or if a person with a monkeypox rash coughs or sneezes near you.

Monkeypox symptoms 

The early stages of monkeypox can be characterised by a high fever, intense headache, swelling of lymph nodes and aching muscles, say the WHO. Those infected are also likely to have a lack of energy in the first five days after contracting the disease. A rash usually begins one-five days after the first symptoms appear. The spots often start on the face before spreading to other parts of the body. The rash will then likely become lesions with flat bases, blisters or pustules, followed by crusts, in around 10 days.

The symptoms can be known to last two-three weeks as the virus is a self-limited disease, meaning it is restricted in its duration. In most cases, it is a mild condition and most people recover within a few weeks, but some people do develop more serious symptoms, so patients with monkeypox in the UK need to be cared for in specialist hospitals.

When should you see a doctor? 

Experts say there isn’t cause to be overly concerned about the appearance of the monkeypox virus. The disease is a mild condition which should disappear of its own accord and is unlikely to spread – the virus is actually less contagious than chickenpox.

Doctors suggest you see your doctor if you get a fever, rash, or start feeling sick within three weeks of being exposed to monkeypox.

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