What is Monkeypox? The symptoms, complications & treatment
What is Monkeypox?
Monkeypox is a disease which is transmitted from animals to humans. In Monkeypox, multiple small swollen spots start appearing on the skin. Monkeypox looks similar to smallpox. (The symptoms complications and treatment for the Monkeypox virus). However, one difference is that Monkeypox causes lymph nodes to get swollen and smallpox does not.
Monkeypox virus is an orthopox virus which causes monkeypox disease in people. Monkey virus has similar symptoms as smallpox but it is less dangerous than smallpox.
While smallpox has been eradicated from the world because of a preventive vaccine.
The first case of Monkeypox was seen in 1958 in a troop of monkeys that were kept for research. The very first case of the Monkey virus in humans was recorded in the year 1970. It transmitted to the human
Most cases of Monkeypox are found in Central and West Africa. It is mostly transmitted from squirrels, rats, and different species of monkeys, hence the name monkey pox.
Monkeypox is rarely transmitted from one human to another but there is still some danger of it happening. It can be transmitted through the exchange of bodily fluids, respiratory droplets from sneezing or coughing, and contaminated objects.
Monkeypox is rarely seen in countries that are not part of Africa. However, new cases have surfaced in the United Kingdom; all the cases are seen in Homosexual people. This is a strange finding because monkeypox is not a sexually transmitted disease.
Symptoms of Monkeypox
Fever- one of the first symptoms of Monkeypox is Fever. It appears 1 to 3 days after being diagnosed.
Headache- Along with fever, diagnosed patients will also have migraines and headaches
Body ache- Monkeypox causes body aches in the diagnosed people. You may experience pain in the muscles, bones and ligaments during Monkey pox
Swollen Lymph nodes- A symptom which differentiates monkey pox from smallpox.
Chills- Fever and body ache can lead to patients experiencing chills
Fatigue- Monkey pox causes patients to become fatigued. Even simple activities feel tiresome if you have Monkey pox.
Rashes- Monkey pox starts with a rash on the face and then the rash spreads to other parts of the body as well.
Also read: Nipah virus – WHO | World Health Organization
Complications of Monkeypox
Secondary infections- Monkey pox weakens the immune system of the affected person and can often result in secondary infections such as conjunctivitis, itching etc.
Bronchopneumonia- It is pneumonia that specifically targets the bronchi. It inflames the air sacs in the bronchi.
Sepsis- It is a condition in which the body damages its immune system while fighting off an infection. Sepsis is a disease which can be life-threatening
Encephalitis- Monkey pox can cause Encephalitis, which is an inflammation of the brain caused by an infection.
Blurred vision and vision loss- Monkey pox can cause corneal infection in patients which can lead to blurred vision and sometimes total loss of vision.
Prevention and treatment of Monkeypox
At the moment there is no known cure available for monkey pox in humans. Since Monkey pox has always been a rare disease in humans, no vaccine was ever developed for it. If it had been as prevalent as smallpox then its treatment or vaccine would have been developed a long time ago.
However, since monkey pox and smallpox are similar to each other, scientists have researched the use of the smallpox vaccine in treating monkey pox. Past data have suggested that the smallpox vaccine is at least 85 per cent effective in preventing monkey pox. Since most adults today have been administered with smallpox vaccine, the chances of being diagnosed with monkey pox are quite low. Even if someone is diagnosed with monkey pox, the symptoms will be less severe than they would have been without the vaccine. If there is a Monkey pox pandemic in the near future, the smallpox vaccine, cidofovir, ST-246, and Vaccinia immune globulin (VIG) can be used to keep it in control.