DAVIE – A third case of monkeypox has now been confirmed in Broward County. Since the last time CBS4 brought you an update, researchers have found that the virus has undergone numerous mutations.
"We've done the comparisons, and plus other nations have been able to sequence their sample, and that's why we're at a point where we're saying this thing is significantly different," Dr. Aileen Marty said.
Dr. Marty, an infection disease specialist at FIU, explained this clad of the virus had historically been concentrated in West Africa, but the samples taken from recently infected people in Europe show more than 50 mutations.
"We're seeing so much transmission in such a short period of time and we're not done seeing the number of cases," she said.
The evidence seems to suggest monkeypox may be easier to spread. As of this publication, the Florida Department of Health has confirmed three cases, two of those infected had acquired the virus outside of the U.S. One person contracted it in Florida. The age of the infected people was as follows:
- 1 in the 25-29 group
- 1 in the 30-34 group
- 1 in the 50-54 group
"We have a huge percentage of people especially young adults who are in the zone of who's mostly in getting this infection that have no immunity," Dr. Aileen Marty pointed out.
Dr. Marty told CBS4, the spread can be contained as long proper isolation techniques are used, and steps are taken to keep it under control. To that end, the CDC has warned all doctors to be on the lookout.
"We have contact information for the CDC and the health department, a straight number in case we have a suspected case so they can get involved," said Dr. Javier Talamo, assistant medical director of the Emergency Department at HCA Florida University Hospital in Davie.
Monkeypox is pretty distinguishable from other rashes. For starters it's all over the body all at once, whereas chickenpox appears at different stages. It's also unlike shingles, which usually warp around the left or right side of the body.
"But if you have a rash and a fever simultaneously, you should get evaluated," Dr. Talamo advised.
The key to prevention is proper hygiene. Doctors recommend washing hands frequently, being aware of crowded spaces and keeping a safe distance.
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