MUNCIE, Ind. – As of Thursday, the number of cases of monkeypox in Indiana has risen to 62, up from 45 the previous Thursday, according to the Centers for Disease Control. These numbers include at least two pediatric cases.
The disease, which spreads mostly through skin-to-skin contact, has been spreading in the United States since May 17, when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention began responding to the outbreak in the United States. from an epidemic. The World Health Organization declared monkeypox a “global emergency” in late July.
Megan Wade-Taxter, spokeswoman for the Indiana Department of Health, said the agency does not have county-level or regional data on monkeypox. He had no knowledge of the disease in East Central Indiana.
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An estimated 17 cases of monkeypox were reported in Marion County in late July, according to The Indianapolis Star. Cases have also increased elsewhere in the state; The Tippecanoe County Health Department announced on July 28 that there were three confirmed but “mild” cases of monkeypox in the county, and one in St. Lebed just days before. Joseph County announced its first confirmed case.
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As of last week, Indiana had received 3,232 doses of the Jynneos vaccine used to fight monkeypox. Due to the limited availability of vaccines, vaccines are first recommended for those who have been in close contact with positive cases to prevent severe disease, according to IDOH.
According to the IDOH statement, additional vaccine is expected in the state soon. Eligibility for the vaccine will be expanded to high-risk groups.
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Delaware County Health Department Administrator Jamie Bane said monkeypox poses a general threat to the public.
“Our citizens need to be aware that monkeypox can be contagious,” he said in an email. “There is an equal chance that this virus is spread primarily through direct contact. However, epidemiological data show that a small part of our population is at high risk in this epidemic.”
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Of the total confirmed cases, 99.1% were men, and 98.4% of them had male-to-male sex, Bain said.
“Some patients report very mild symptoms and therefore cannot protect others by avoiding contact,” he said. “Skin lesions are the main symptom that people associate with monkeypox. These lesions can be obvious, but they can also look good like any other common rash or skin condition.”
Bain said understanding the common symptoms and risk factors of monkeypox is helpful to avoid contracting monkeypox.
The head of the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, recommended that those at risk reduce their sexual partners.
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“It means making safer choices for yourself and for others, for men who have sex with men,” Tedros told The Associated Press. “This, in this case, involves reducing the number of sexual partners you have.”
“Monkey pox is not easily spread through brief casual contact, but it’s important to remember that someone can be exposed if they have close contact with a positive case,” said Indiana Health Commissioner Chris Box. “Individuals who believe they may have been exposed or develop symptoms similar to monkeypox are encouraged to seek medical attention.”
How is the monkeypox virus spread?
Marshall Glesby, an infectious disease specialist at Weill Cornell Medicine and New York-Presbyterian, told USA Today that the disease can infect anyone; for example, two children in the United States had close contact with family members who were infected with monkeypox.
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According to IDOH, distemper is in the same family of viruses as smallpox. With symptoms similar to smallpox but milder, monkeypox is rarely fatal.
In addition to contact with rashes, scabs, or body fluids from a person with monkeypox, monkeypox can also be spread by touching objects, fabrics (clothes, sheets, or towels) and surfaces used by a person with monkeypox. with respiratory secretions. Representatives of the World Health Organization said that anyone in close contact with the patient is at risk of contamination through clothing or bed linen.
Monkeypox was discovered in 1958 when two outbreaks of a smallpox-like illness occurred in colonies of monkeys kept for research, hence its name, the CDC said. Rodents and non-human primates (such as monkeys) can harbor the virus and transmit it to humans.
What are the symptoms of monkeypox?
According to the CDC, monkeypox symptoms may include:
- don’t hesitate
- A headache
- Muscle and back pain
- Swollen lymph nodes
- to be tired
- Respiratory symptoms (eg, sore throat, stuffy nose, or cough)
- A rash located on or near the genitals or anus, but can also appear in other areas such as the arms, legs, chest, face, or mouth.
The UN health agency warned that the disease could be particularly severe among children and pregnant women.
Bain said county health departments encourage anyone with concerns to visit in.gov/health/monkeypox for more information and to register at http://protect-us.mimecast.com/s/lUaRCL91K8fNgKqw7TPqxxp?domain=bit.ly. Must be aware of clinical opportunities in the ECI area.
To date, there have been about 25,391 cases in 83 countries and 6,325 in the United States, according to the CDC.
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