What You Should Know About Monkeypox Symptoms – The Hill

history at a glance


  • There are more than 6,000 cases of monkeypox infection in the US.

  • The monkeypox virus can cause a variety of symptoms including fever, skin lesions, and headache.

  • A recent article details the symptoms of more than 500 cases from 16 countries.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 6,326 cases of monkeypox infection have been reported in the U.S. In an article published in the New England Journal of Medicine, the researchers collected information on the symptoms of 528 monkeypox virus (MPV) infections from 43 sites in 16 countries during the period from April 27 to June 24 this year.

Overall, 95 percent of people with infections had skin rashes or lesions, and 64 percent had fewer than 10 lesions. Seventy-three percent had lesions in the genital area and 41 percent had lesions in the mouth. Fifty-five percent of people had injuries to the torso, arms, or legs. Lesions were present on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet in 10 percent of cases. A small number of people, 54, had a single genital lesion. There were no deaths among the patients.

Patients also reported fever (62 percent), lethargy (41 percent), muscle pain (31 percent), and headache (27 percent) as symptoms.

For 23 of the cases, there was exposure history information showing that the incubation period could range from three to 20 days. The researchers estimate that the median incubation period was seven days.

Seventy people, representing 13 percent of cases, were hospitalized, with pain management being the main reason. Eighteen people had soft tissue superinfections.

MPV is primarily transmitted through close physical contact. This study indicates that the virus was found in the seminal fluid in 29 of the 32 samples that were analyzed; however, not enough is known about the transmission of the virus to say whether it can be transmitted through body fluids. As epidemiologist Katelyn Jetelina says in her newsletter, “Current data shows that transmission of MPV can occur in multiple ways, but what is possible is not always likely. The epidemiological data shows a very close and prolonged exposure that absolutely dominates the transmission networks.”

Posted on August 03, 2022

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