Monkeypox in UAE: 10 ways the virus can infect a person

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Test tubes labeled monkeypox virus positive and negative are seen in this illustration.

Gulf Today Report

On Wednesday, the World Health Organization issued a statement recommending interim guidance for countries to strengthen surveillance and investigation of monkeypox cases, contact tracing and treatment, to break chains of transmission and stop the outbreak.

The World Health Organization revealed, during its statement, 10 ways the virus can infect a person.

Modes of transmission of monkeypox infection:

— People with monkeypox are contagious when symptoms appear

—Close physical contact with a person showing symptoms

— Coming in contact with skin rashes

— Body fluids such as pus or blood
 
— Scales are especially contagious

— Clothes, bedding or towels
   
— Food utensils contaminated with the virus

—It is transmitted through saliva
 
— People who come in close contact with an infectious person, including health workers, family members and sexual partners, are at greater risk of infection.

—From the pregnant woman to the foetus or to the child during childbirth

It is reported that monkeypox is a zoonotic viral disease that can be transmitted from animals to humans, and can also spread between people through close contact with an infected person.

Symptoms of monkeypox usually include a rash or lesions, fever, severe headache, muscle aches, back pain, loss of energy, and swollen lymph nodes.

Is there a treatment?

There is no specific treatment, but smallpox vaccination has been shown to be about 85% effective in preventing monkeypox.


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However, access to smallpox vaccines is now limited as the disease has been eradicated globally.

“The good news is that the smallpox vaccine works well against monkeypox.

The bad news is that most people under 45 don’t have the smallpox vaccine,” said epidemiologist and health economist Eric FeiglDing.  

JYNNEOS  (also known as Imvamune or Imvanex) is an attenuated live virus vaccine which has been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration for the prevention of monkeypox.

The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) is currently evaluating JYNNEOS for the protection of people at risk of occupational exposure to  orthopoxviruses such as smallpox and monkeypox in a pre-event setting.

How is it transmitted?   

Transmission from animals to humans can occur through direct contact with blood, body fluids or lesions of the skin or mucous membranes of infected animals.

Secondary or human-to-human transmission can occur through close contact with respiratory secretions, skin lesions of an infected person, or recently contaminated objects.

Transmission by respiratory droplet particles typically requires prolonged face-to-face contact, which puts healthcare workers, family members, and other close contacts of infected people at increased risk.

On Monday, the WHO reported that some of Britain’s recently confirmed cases have appeared in gay men.

But experts have warned it was too premature to establish a link.

“Although the current cluster of cases involve men who have sex with men, it is probably too early to tell conclusions about the mode of transmission or assuming that sexual activity was necessary for transmission, unless we have clear epidemiological data and analysis,” Michael Skinner, a virologist at Imperial College London, told the Science Media Center (SMC) website.  

How bad is it?

This is usually a self-limiting disease with symptoms lasting two to four weeks.

Severe cases occur most often in children and are related to the extent of exposure to the virus, the patient’s medical condition and the nature of the complications.

The mortality rate per case varied but remained between 0 and 10% in all recorded infections.
“The West African strain, present in the UK cases, is estimated to have a case fatality rate of around 1%.

There is also a strain found in the Congo region which can be fatal in as many as 10 percent of cases, but the UK cases do not have this strain,” Simon Clarke, associate professor in cellular microbiology at the University of Reading, told SMC.

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