Sante Publique France reported in an update Wednesday that 33 confirmed cases of Monkeypox have been reported in France- 24 in Ile-de-France, 2 in Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes; 1 in Haut-de-France, 1 in Centre-Val de Loire, 4 in Occitanie and 1 case in Normandy.
To date, in Europe, these cases have occurred mainly, but not exclusively, in men who have sex with men (MSM), with no direct link to people returning from endemic areas.
Monkeypox is an infectious disease caused by an orthopoxvirus. This zoonotic disease is usually transmitted to humans in forest areas of Central and West Africa by wild rodents or primates, but human-to-human transmission is also possible, particularly within the family home or in the care setting.
The Monkeypox virus can be transmitted by direct contact with lesions on the skin or mucous membranes of a sick person, as well as by droplets (saliva, sneezing, sputter, etc.). You can also become contaminated through contact with the patient’s environment (bedding, clothes, dishes, bath linen, etc.). It is therefore important that the patients observe isolation throughout the duration of the disease (until the disappearance of the last scabs, most often 3 weeks).
In Central or West Africa, humans can also become infected through contact with animals, wild or in captivity, dead or alive, such as rodents or monkeys.
Monkeypox virus infection is not known as an STI, but direct contact with broken skin during sex facilitates transmission.
Monkeypox virus infection most often begins with a fever, which is frequently high and accompanied by headaches, body aches and asthenia. After about 2 days, a blistering rash appears, made up of fluid-filled blisters that progress to drying out, scab formation and then scarring. Itching may occur. The vesicles tend to be concentrated on the face, the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet. The mucous membranes are also affected, in the mouth and the genital area. The lymph nodes are swollen and painful, under the jaw and in the neck.
The incubation of the disease can range from 5 to 21 days. The fever phase lasts about 1 to 3 days. The disease most often heals spontaneously, after 2 to 3 weeks but sometimes 4 weeks.
The disease is more severe in children and in immunocompromised people. It can be complicated by superinfection of skin lesions or by respiratory, digestive, ophthalmological or neurological disorders.
At this stage, the cases reported in Europe are mostly mild, and there are no reported deaths.
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