Monkeypox: 11 new cases confirmed in UK as outbreak spreads

Eleven more cases of monkeypox have been found in the UK, health chiefs say, bringing the total to 20.

The World Health Organization is holding meetings with experts in all countries with outbreaks, including several other European nations that have at least 100 cases in total.

The UK’s tally more than doubled on Friday from the previously identified nine.

The first recent case was diagnosed in someone who had returned to the UK from Nigeria, but the cases are not all in one cluster.

British health chiefs say they expect cases to rise in the coming days, with more being diagnosed in the community.

dr Sue Hopkins, senior medical adviser to the UK Health Security Agency, said: “We continue to rapidly investigate the source of these infections and raise awareness among healthcare professionals.

“We are contacting all identified close contacts of the cases to provide health information and advice.”

According to the World Health Organization, about one in ten cases of monkeypox is fatal.

The patients initially suffer from fever, headaches, swelling, back pain, pain and general listlessness. After the febrile fracture, sufferers develop skin rashes, with a rash spreading over the face, followed by the rest of the body, particularly the palms of hands and soles of the feet.

The rash can look like chickenpox or syphilis and form a scab that falls off after about three weeks. The infectious lesions may be itchy or painful.

Incubation usually lasts six to 13 days but can last up to 21 days.

The disease is not usually transmitted sexually but can be transmitted through direct contact during sex. Several British cases have been confirmed in gay, bisexual and other men who have had sex with men who have attended sexual health services.

It can also be spread by touching clothing, bedding, or towels used by someone with the rash, and by coughing and sneezing.

The British Health Safety Authority (UKHSA) confirmed the new infections.

Health Minister Sajid Javid said most of those infected had mild symptoms. He informed the G7 health ministers about what was known so far.

“Most cases are mild and I can confirm that we have sourced additional doses of vaccines that are effective against monkeypox,” he said.

It is believed that the World Health Organization will discuss the spread of the virus, the unusually high prevalence among gay and bisexual men and the vaccination situation.

Some UK health workers were offered the smallpox vaccine as cases of monkeypox spread worldwide.

Australia has reported its first case of monkeypox in a traveler recently returned from the UK. The USA, Canada, Belgium, Portugal, France, Italy, Spain and Sweden have also reported their first cases in recent days.

Michael Skinner, Lecturer in Virology at Imperial College London, said: “Virologists identify two strains of the monkeypox virus. The Congo strain is more serious (up to 10 percent mortality) and likely more transmissible to humans than the West African strain, the source of these recent cases, for which the mortality rate is estimated at about 1 percent.

“Most cases of monkeypox in the UK are likely to be of the West African strain, as the UK receives more travelers from that region than Congo.”

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/monkeypox-virus-infection-uk-cases-update-b2083602.html Monkeypox: 11 new cases confirmed in UK as outbreak spreads

Bobby Allyn

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