The 2022 Monkeypox Outbreak

Aakanksh Gurnani

August 26, 2022

Before understanding what the ongoing Monkeypox outbreak is about, it’s vital to know how the disease spreads, what the effects are, and what to do if you come to have this disease.

Monkeypox is an infectious viral disease. Common symptoms of monkeypox are fever, a rash that forms blisters and then crusts over, and swollen lymph nodes. They are throughout the body, but in clusters in the neck, armpits, and ears. They can be the size of a grape or a pea, soft or hard, and flexible. Symptoms will usually appear five to twenty-one days after exposure to the monkeypox virus.

Symptoms will usually last anywhere between two to four weeks. The disease is spread by the monkeypox virus. The monkeypox virus is a zoonotic virus, which means it spreads from animals to humans and humans to humans. The virus is an infectious disease caused by a pathogen. The disease most similar to Monkeypox is smallpox, with Monkeypox having a lower mortality rate and being less harmful, and having a less extensive rash.

The first time the virus was found in a human was in 1970. The virus was first discovered in monkeys in 1958, hence the name monkeypox.

There are two clades of the virus. Clade I is usually much more severe than Clade II. So far, Clade II has had a death rate of 3.6 percent, while Clade I has had a death rate of about 10.3 percent. Cases can be extremely severe in children, people with suppressed or damaged/dysfunctional immune systems, and pregnant women.

The virus can be spread by infected body fluids, or contaminated objects ( small droplets on said objects ). The virus is infectious utility all lesions have crusted over and fallen off, but in some cases, the virus is still infectious until a week after the lesions crusted over and fell off. The best way to find whether the virus is still infectious or not is by testing those lesions for the virus’s DNA.

The virus used to be thought of as uncommon, however, outbreaks have significantly increased and become more severe since the first case in 1970. The 2022 Monkeypox outbreak is the first widespread outbreak outside of Africa [ with most cases occurring in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) ]. The spread was noticed in May 2022 when cases popped up in the United Kingdom. The World Health Organization declared the monkeypox outbreak a public health emergency of international concern (PHEIC).

For further reading and more information, check out the WHO’s official site at this link: -