Evening Express

What is monkeypox and how does it spread?

A second person has been diagnosed with monkeypox in England, health officials confirmed. The patient is believed to have acquired the infection in Nigeria.

Here are some facts about monkeypox:

What is monkeypox?

A rare disease caused by a viral infection.

  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Aching muscles
  • Backache
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Chills
  • Exhaustion

How does it spread?

Most commonly when a person comes into close contact with an infected animal.

It is not spread easily between people.

What are the symptoms?

Infected people usually start to show symptoms between five and 21 days after infection.

These include fever, headache, muscle aches, backache, swollen lymph nodes, chills and exhaustion.

How serious is it?

Most patients recover within a few weeks and do not need treatment, but it can cause severe illness in some people.

Why is it called monkeypox?

The disease was first discovered in monkeys kept for research in 1958. The first human case was recorded in 1970 in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Where is it prevalent?

Cases have been reported in a number of countries in Africa, including Cameroon, the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Liberia and Nigeria.

An outbreak occurred in America in 2003 after rodents were imported from Africa.

There was a sustained outbreak in Nigeria last year and there have been sporadic cases reported since then.