You’ve heard of Ebola, SARS, MERS, and Zika, right? But did you know monkeys carry similar viruses? They are now a severe hazard to humans. Learn about the deadliest disease animal carriers have ever inflicted upon us. What did we all miss about Monkeypox? What does Monkeypox look like? It is similar to smallpox, though it’s less contagious and usually doesn’t kill its victims. Similar to smallpox(variola vaccine) and cowpox viruses, Monkeypox is caused by the Variola virus.
What does monkeypox look like?
A human who gets Monkeypox develops small blisters inside their mouth, nose, eyes, throat, ears, genitals, and sometimes in other parts of their body. These lesions may take several weeks to months to heal. The illness is transmitted to people from animals; humans get infected if they have direct contact with sick monkeys or contaminated material (like meat) that contains the monkeypox virus.
Monkeypox looks like measles or chickenpox. It starts with fever, headache, muscle aches, sore throat, cough, runny nose, and sneezing. Then comes a series of bumps, called papules, that appear first around the face and head. They turn into fluid-filled blisters that break open, leaving tiny scars where the blisters were.
How is it transmitted?
The disease is typically spread through contact with infected animals or bodily fluids, including respiratory secretions, urine, feces, blood, tears, saliva, vomit, vaginal discharge, breast milk, and semen. In addition, the virus may be spread indirectly via contaminated fomites, such as clothing, bedding, toys, tools, and food packaging.
Is Monkeypox contagious?
Monkeypox is not contagious. Most people who catch Monkeypox do not know they did until after the rash appears. Monkeypox is not spread person-to-person like the flu. You cannot get it from touching someone or even being near them. If you touch something that contains the virus, and then you touch your eye or mouth, you could develop a lesson. You might also get Monkeypox while caring for someone who has it.
Sign & Symptoms of Monkeypox –
By analyzing the symptoms of Monkeypox, you can distinguish between rashes and What does Monkeypox look like? Some of the commonly occurring symptoms of Monkeypox are:
- Skin rash
- Muscle and bone pain
- Sore throat
- Abdominal pain
- Lymph node swelling (in arms, neck, chest, groin)
In some people, symptoms last about 2-months after exposure and go away without treatment. In others, they may spread throughout the body, causing skin rashes, swollen glands, pneumonia, and difficulty breathing. These are called secondary infections. Infants under 6 months, pregnant women, senior adults 60 or older, those with weaker immune systems, and certain chronic conditions are at most risk for severe symptoms upon the first infection. It can be fatal in 2% of infected individuals.
Treatment for Monkeypox –
Monkeypox is caused by the monkeypox virus (MPV). MPV can affect humans but usually causes mild disease. There are few cases of severe illness reported each year. However, those infected with Monkeypox Virus have a higher risk of complications and should seek medical attention immediately. A vaccine for Monkeypox does not exist. However, since it has symptoms similar to smallpox, a vaccine used for treating it can also be used for treating Monkeypox.
Antibiotics work by killing bacteria. Since Monkeypox is not a bacterial infection, antibiotics would be ineffective. Also, antibiotics cannot be given to infants less than 1-month-old, people with kidney problems, people who are allergic to penicillin, or anyone who does not tolerate antibiotics well. If someone has been exposed to Monkeypox, the best thing to do would be to get vaccinated.
Supportive care includes treating fever, coughing, and shortness of breath symptoms. Fever generally goes away over time if left untreated, while cough and shortness of breath improve with rest. Medications such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Motrin) can help reduce fever and pain/inflammation. Rest, plenty of water, and a humidifier to keep the air moist will help relieve pain.
Monkeypox Prevention Steps –
To protect yourself from monkeypox, do the following three preventative measures:
- Do not come near a person or animal infected with Monkeypox.
- Avoid physical contact with wildlife animals.
- Look for similar signs and symptoms if you fear yourself or anyone close to being infected.
Also, Read Method To Correctly Wash Hands: Reducing The Risk Of Infection.
How does Monkeypox compare to other diseases such as Ebola or Zika?
Monkeypox, Ebola, and Zika all cause somewhat similar symptoms, but there are differences between each disease.
- Monkeypox is caused by smallpox species, leading to similar symptoms. Both Ebola and Zika are viruses spread through mosquitoes.
- Monkeypox is transmitted through contagious animals. At the same time, both Ebola and Zika are viruses spread through mosquitoes.
- The Ebola virus can only replicate outside the human body (not inside). Zika cannot multiply outside the human body–it does not survive long enough to do so. Monkeypox inside the human body is similar to smallpox.
- Monkeypox and ebola are not currently known to be contagious. However, the same cannot be true for Zika, as it is highly contagious.
- All viruses cause fever, headache, muscle pain, joint pain, vomiting, and diarrhea. Ebola is a virus that affects internal bleeding and blood clots, causing problems for people who get infected. Ebola also causes inflammation and tissue injury.
- Zika virus causes birth defects. Zika has recently become a problem in Brazil due to its link with microcephaly. This is a neurological disorder where babies are born with small heads. On the other hand, Ebola tends to affect adults, though it does carry the risk of death. Monkeypox, too, is growing rapidly across the globe, infecting hundreds already.
- At present, there is a vaccination for the Zika virus. And vaccination used for smallpox can be used in treatment for Monkeypox too. But there is no immediate vaccine for Ebola. If left untreated, these viruses can eventually lead to death.
Which one should you worry about?
Any virus causing any threatening symptoms or complications are alarming and concerning. If you experience similar symptoms, you should consult a physician or doctor immediately and get your treatment at the earliest.
Monkeypox is not a new disease. Until now, Monkeypox has only been considered a disease affecting wild primates, particularly African monkeys. Today, however, it is known to infect humans as well. Close contact with infected animals transmits the virus, although transmission via fomites, air currents, or contaminated foodstuffs cannot be ruled out. If left untreated, the virus can result in death.
Also, Read Treating COVID-19 at home: Care tips for you and others.
Is there a cure for Monkeypox?
There is no definite cure for Monkeypox. However, proper treatment and medications can help it stop.
How does Monkeypox start?
Monkeypox begins when you come in close contact with an infected human or animal.
How long does it take to get rid of Monkeypox?
It depends on the symptoms and severity of the infection. In general, it takes about 3-4 weeks.