Monkeypox: Things You Should Know About The Disease

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Things you should know about monkeypox

Monkeypox is a rare disease that is caused by infection with
monkeypox virus. The disease, which is a similar to but milder than Smallpox,
is transmitted to people from various wild animals. It however, has limited
secondary spread through human-to-human transmission.
It was first reported in 1970 in the Democratic Republic of
Congo (then known as Zaire) in a 9 year old boy who lived in a region where
smallpox had been eradicated 2 years prior.
It was also reported in Midwest U.S in 2003 and most
patients, it was discovered, had had close contact with pet prairie dogs.
According to the U.S Centre for Disease Control, the natural
reservoir of the disease remains unknown, however, some rodent species are
expected to play a role in its transmission.
World Health Organisation (WHO) reports that the infection
has been found in many animal species: rope squirrels, tree squirrels, Gambian
rats, striped mice, dormice and primates.

Transmission of Monkeypox

Through direct contact with the blood, bodily fluids, or
handling of infected animals.
Eating infected animals is also another risk factor.
Human-human transmission is through infected respiratory
tract secretions and skin lesions of an infected person or objects recently
contaminated by patient fluids or lesion materials.
There is however, no evidence that

Here are some ways to prevent the spread of Monkeypox:

Avoid contact with animals that could harbor the virus
(including animals that are sick or that have been found dead in areas where monkeypox
Avoid contact with any materials, such as bedding, that has
been in contact with a sick animal.
Isolate infected patients from others who could be at risk
for infection.
Practice good hand hygiene after contact with infected
animals or humans. For example, washing your hands with soap and water or using
an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
Use personal protective equipment (PPE) when caring for
Signs and symptoms of the disease include: Fever, Headache,
Muscle aches, Backache, Swollen lymph nodes, Chills, Exhaustion. These signs
occur between 0 – 5 days of contracting the disease.
After about 1 – 3 days of appearance of fever, the patient
begins to develop rashes which starts from the face and spreads to several
parts of the body.

Treatment of Monkeypox

There is no proven treatment for the disease, however,
smallpox vaccine, antivirals, and vaccinia immune globulin (VIG) can be used in
controlling its spread.


Please do well to report any of the above symptoms to the
nearest appropriate medical centre as well as make sure the preventive measures
listed above are taken.
“The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) yesterday
announced that fresh cases of Monkeypox disease had been recorded in the
country. A statement by the NCDC Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu,
disclosed this.”- The Guardian
According to The Guardian, he said 19 fresh cases had been recorded across the country,
aside from the 12 cases that were earlier recorded in Bayelsa State. According
to the statement, other states where the disease has been discovered are
Rivers, Ekiti, Akwa Ibom, Lagos, Ogun and Cross River States.
“Following the notification of a suspected Monkeypox outbreak on September 22, 2017 in Bayelsa State, other suspected cases have
been reported from six more states, bringing the total number of suspected
cases to 31 across seven states.
“Samples have been collected from each suspected case for
laboratory confirmation and the results are still being awaited. So far, there
have been no deaths recorded. It is unlikely that many of the suspected cases
are actually monkeypox, as they were all being investigated.”
Ihekweazu explained that the suspected cases are currently
receiving appropriate medical care, even as the patients were improving
clinically. He said the Federal Ministry of Health, through the NCDC was
supporting the affected states to ensure that the outbreak was brought under
The epidemiologist disclosed that the NCDC had activated an
Emergency Operation Centre (EOC) to coordinate investigation and response to
the disease.
The symptoms include fever, headache, body pain, malaise,
lymphadenopathy (enlargement of glands), sore throat and the characteristic
generalised vesicular rash.
While urging general cleanliness, he added that the rashes
might last between two to four weeks. Monkeypox is self-limiting, which means
patients could recover with time.
The Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide Idris,
said the blood samples from the two suspected cases in the state had been taken
to the laboratory to verify their status.
Idris said although there was no specific vaccine for the
disease, the vaccination against small pox has been proven to be 85 per cent
effective in preventing the disease.
He urged residents to avoid close contact with infected
people, wash their hands with soap, as well as avoid the consumption of bush
meat and dead animals.
In Akwa Ibom State, the state Commissioner for Health, Dr.
Dominic Ukpong urged the residents not to panic. He said: “It is only Senegal
that has the equipment to confirm the disease, so the samples of all suspected
cases have been sent for confirmation.”
In Rivers State, two patients suspected to be infected with
the virus are currently hospitalised at the University of Port Harcourt
Teaching Hospital, (UPTH).
The Chief Medical Director of the Institution, Prof. Aaron
Ojule, who disclosed this yesterday, said the patients are in isolation ward
where experts were managing their condition, pending the outcome of the samples
taken for examination.According to Y Naija, on the issue of the monkeypox, the House of Representatives, on Tuesday, summoned the
Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, over the outbreak of monkeypox in the

Lawmaker from Bayelsa State, Mr. Diri Douye, raised the
issue under matters of urgent national importance, praying that the minister
should be summoned, Y Naija reports
“The House is concerned by the shocking admission of Adewole
that monkeypox could not be confirmed in Nigeria until laboratory
investigations by WHO and referral to Dakar, Senegal.
“Again, concerned that the disease has spread to other
states, notably Uyo in Akwa Ibom State, in spite of concerted efforts by the
Bayelsa State Government since the initial report in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State,”
the House motion read partly.
News Source : Bella Naija ; The Guardian
Photo Credit: The Guardian

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