Global Health News: Monkeypox


Bokarik Karu and Ava Lee

Monkeypox is a rare disease that was first discovered in 1958 when two outbreaks of a pox-like disease occurred in colonies of monkeys, which were kept for research. However in 1970, it was discovered in a 9-month old boy in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Since 1970, human cases have been reported in 11 African countries.

People who have the virus usually have a rash, the rash may be painful or itchy, and may scab over. Some common symptoms for Monkeypox are fever, respiratory symptoms, body aches, and sore muscles. Symptoms usually start within 3 weeks of exposure to the virus. If someone has flu-like symptoms, they normally develop a rash 1-4 days later. Monkeypox usually lasts 2-4 weeks.

The best way you can avoid having monkeypox is by avoiding direct contact with a human or animal who already has rashes, scabs, and symptoms related to monkeypox. Also avoid touching objects that have already been touched by someone with monkeypox. Skin to skin contact with an infected person will cause infection.

So far, cases of monkeypox have been discovered all over the world, including Arkansas. As of now, there are 54 cases of monkeypox in the state of Arkansas out of 23,499 total cases in the U.S. all together.