Monkeypox symptoms differ from previous outbreaks: UK study

The authors, from a number of institutions, including Chelsea & Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said the case definitions should be revised to avoid overlooking cases, especially as monkeypox other common sexually transmitted infections (STIs) such as herpes and syphilis can “mimicking”. The study also found that a quarter of monkeypox patients were HIV positive and a quarter had another STI.

“Misdiagnosing the infection may prevent the opportunity for appropriate intervention and the prevention of further transmission,” said Dr Ruth Byrne of the trust.

Monkeypox spreads through close contact, and researchers are trying to determine whether it can also be transmitted through semen, the classic definition of sexual transmission.

David Heymann, an infectious disease epidemiologist and WHO advisor on the outbreak, said it was important to control the spread without stigmatizing those affected.

“That includes working with populations at the highest risk to try to help them understand how easy it is to prevent this infection — simply by avoiding physical contact in the genital area.” [when a rash is present]he told Reuters.