The World Health Organization (WHO) has 92 confirmed cases of monkeypox and 28 suspected cases. They were reported by 12 non-endemic countries, the WHO said on Twitter on Sunday. The organization "received reports from 12 non-endemic countries on 92 laboratory-confirmed cases of monkeypox and 28 cases of suspected and ongoing investigations." The WHO explained that no link had been established between the infection and the travel of the infected to a region where monkeypox is endemic. The organization stressed that detecting the disease in people who have not visited endemic countries is "a very unusual event." Infection occurs through close physical contact between sick and healthy people. "According to available information, the majority of cases have been identified among men who have had sex with men and applied to primary care facilities and sexual health clinics," the report said.
The genome sequence of a biological sample taken in Portugal shows a close link with infections in 2018 and 2019, when the infection was transmitted from Nigeria to the United Kingdom, Israel and Singapore.
The WHO recalled that monkeypox is endemic in Benin, Gabon, Ghana, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Cameroon, Cte d'Ivoire, Liberia, Nigeria, the Republic of the Congo, Sierra Leone, the Central African Republic (CAR) and South Sudan. The WHO has recommended continuing to monitor the epidemiological situation in non-endemic countries where cases of monkeypox infection have been detected. We are talking in particular about identifying contacts of sick people with healthy people. The organization said it would convene experts "to discuss vaccination recommendations".
Monkeypox is a rare viral disease that is mainly transmitted to humans by wild animals (rodents, primates). Symptoms of the disease include fever, headache, muscle aches, back pain, swollen lymph nodes, chills and fatigue. Skin rashes can appear on the face and other parts of the body. According to the WHO, the death rate from monkeypox outbreaks is usually between 1% and 10%, with the majority of deaths being in younger age groups. There is no specific treatment or vaccine for monkeypox, but previous smallpox vaccination has also been effective against the disease. The monkeypox virus, which spread in April and May in a number of Western European countries, has been found on other continents. It has recently been discovered in Australia, Belgium, the United Kingdom, Germany, Spain, Italy, Canada, Portugal, the United States, France, Switzerland and Sweden.
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