Health officials confirm two people have contracted monkeypox in London | UK news
The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) has confirmed two people have contracted monkeypox.
The spouses live in the same house and are not related to another person He was diagnosed with the disease in England earlier this month.
Viral infections are similar to human smallpox and usually cause mild illness, with most people recovering within a few weeks.
One of the most recent people to test positive for the virus is being treated in a specialist infectious disease unit at St Mary’s Hospital, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust in London.
However, the other person is in isolation and does not need hospital treatment, the UKHSA said.
Health officials said they are now investigating where and how the recent cases were infected.
They also said that people who may have had close contact with the two people are being contacted and given health advice.
Dr Colin Brown, Director of Clinical and Emerging Infections at UKHSA, noted that it was important to remember that infection “does not spread easily between people and requires close personal contact” with someone showing symptoms.
“The overall risk to the general public remains very low,” he added.
The case announced earlier this month was of a person with a recent travel history from Nigeria, where they are believed to have contracted the infection.
At the time, the person was said to be receiving care in the infectious disease unit at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust in London.
What are the symptoms?
Initial symptoms of monkeypox include fever, headache, muscle aches, back pain, swollen lymph nodes, chills and fatigue, according to the UKHSA.
A rash can also develop, which changes and goes through various stages before the formation of a crust, which subsequently falls off.
According to the NHS, it is mainly spread by wild animals in parts of West or Central Africa, and the risk of infection in the UK is very low.
According to Public Health England, the infection was first discovered in 1958 when an outbreak of a smallpox-like disease in monkeys kept for research.
The first human case of infection was not recorded until 1970.