Four deaths from monkeypox reported outside Africa as outbreak expands

A demonstration in San Francisco on July 18, 2022.

A demonstration in San Francisco on July 18, 2022.
picture: Haven Daly (AP)

An outbreak of monkeypox has now caused the first deaths outside Africa. Over the weekend, Brazil reported one monkeypox-related death, while Spain reported two deaths. On Monday, India reported one death as well.

The deaths in Brazil included a 41-year-old man with lymphoma and a weakened immune system who had developed septic shock, according to health officials. He said Friday. In Spain, Associated Press mentionedBoth deaths were of young men. And in India, health officials He said That a 22-year-old man died while using a ventilator, three days after being admitted to a private hospital with a fever.

Monkeypox has been known to occasionally cause outbreaks in humans in some parts of Africa since at least the 1970s, and is usually transmitted to humans from animals, with rodents being a common reservoir of the virus. So far in 2022 there It has been More than 1,400 confirmed or suspected cases and about 70 confirmed or suspected deaths from monkeypox in Africa. But the bulk of these cases and deaths appear to be related to more severe strains of the virus than strains that have spread around the world. The most recent death is the first reported case outside Africa during this year’s largest global outbreak. In general, there were more than 22000 cases So far documented worldwide in non-endemic areas this year.

Unlike previous outbreaks, the virus now spreads primarily through human-to-human transmission. a big majority Of the cases with known information that has been linked to prolonged close contact during sex, most of those infected to date are MSM. Monkeypox can be transmitted through any form of close contact between people, however, it can theoretically be spread via respiratory droplets as well. There were reports of family members among them childrenThe virus is transmitted from people in their homes.

Symptoms of monkeypox include a flu-like illness along with a characteristic, painful, contagious rash that can take up to a month to fall off. according to World Health Organization. But the infection can cause life-threatening illness, and has historically been more dangerous for pregnant women, children, and others with weakened immune systems.

“Notification of deaths from monkeypox does not change our assessment of the outbreak in Europe. We know that although the disease is self-curing in most cases, monkeypox can cause serious complications,” Catherine Smallwood, WHO Senior Emergencies Officer in Europe , Tell AFP. As monkeypox continues to spread in Europe, expect to see more deaths. Our goal should be to quickly cut transmission in Europe and stop the outbreak.”

There are vaccines and antiviral drugs available for monkeypox, although their supply has so far been restricted. Late last month, who announce A public health emergency due to an outbreak of monkeypox. last week, San Francisco And the New York CityFollowed her lead — the areas in the United States with the largest number of cases by far.

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