Four more cases of rare monkeypox infection detected in the UK

May 17, 2022
Four more cases of rare monkeypox infection detected in the UK

The British health authorities have reported four more cases of the viral monkeypox infection in England, bringing the total confirmed cases since early May 2022 to seven. According to the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), investigations were underway to establish links between the four new cases – tracing goes back to London and appear not to be connected to the other three cases.

Monkeypox is a rare viral infection similar to, but milder than smallpox, which was eradicated in 1980. Although most infected people recover from monkeypox within a few weeks, it can in rare cases be fatal.

The latest four cases have no links of travel to a country where monkeypox is endemic: they have contracted the West African clade of the virus, which is mild compared to the Central African one. All four cases self-identify as gay, bisexual, or as men who have sex with men, the UKHSA said.

“This is rare and unusual,” said Susan Hopkins, UKHSA Chief Medical Officer. “UKHSA is rapidly investigating the source of these infections because the evidence suggests that there may be transmission of the monkeypox virus in the community, spread by close contact.”

Hopkins has urged men who are gay and bisexual to be aware of any unusual rashes or lesions and to contact a sexual health service immediately.

Read: LGBQ youth more prone to obesity


Category: Community, Features

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