The dreaded monkeypox virus has already touched down on Guyanese soil infecting a public servant who worked on public transportation. That person is currently in isolation, but it is not clear how many other persons may be infected.
While the monkeypox virus carries a very low fatality rate (less than 1% of patients die), it is extremely painful and uncomfortable, and it is something that you should go out of your way to avoid. Like the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic virus, monkeypox deals a harsher blow to people with compromised immune systems and/or comorbidities.
In light of the fact that monkeypox has already been confirmed in Guyana, here’s what the World Health Organization (WHO) would like you to know.
- Most people recover fully without treatment, but in some cases, people can get seriously ill.
- It is called monkeypox because it was first discovered in monkeys.
- While the risk to the general public is low, the WHO is responding to the outbreak as a high priority.
- What we know about the outbreak is changing fast – we are learning more everyday.
Some Symptoms of Monkeypox
- Rash with blisters on face, hand, feet, body, eyes, mouth or genitals.
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Muscle and backaches
- Low energy
How Monkeypox is Spread
- Skin to skin contact
- Face to face contact
- Mouth to skin contact
- Touching infected bedding, towels, clothing, or objects.
How to Protect Yourself from Monkeypox
- Avoid skin-to-skin, face-to-face, and mouth-to-mouth contact, including sexual contact.
- Clean hands, objects, surfaces, beddings, towels, and clothes regularly.
- Wear a mask if you can’t avoid close contact and when handling bedding, towels, and clothes.
- Ask people if they have symptoms before you have close contact.
Note: Using condoms during sex many not prevent the spread of monkeypox, but it can prevent the transmission of other sexually transmitted diseases.
What to do if You Suspect You are Infected with Monkeypox
- Get advice from a health worker.
- Isolate at home if possible.
- Protect others by avoiding close contact with them.
- Wear a mask and avoid touching if you need to have close contact.