Monkeypox Virus Diagnosed at Shaare Zedek Hospital

Isreal confirms 1st monkeypox case related to international travel
Tel aviv at night

The Israel Ministry of Health received a report from Shaare Zedek Medical Center and the laboratory that diagnoses a monkeypox patient, reports Afludiary.

This Israeli man lives and works in the Port Harcourt area of southern Nigeria, got sick about a week after his return and was diagnosed September 12, 2018. He is currently in isolation in his home. 

The Isreali Ministry of Health said in this article that they are taking the necessary actions to monitor this viral disease. 

Monkeypox is a rare disease that is caused by infection with monkeypox virus. Monkeypox virus belongs to the Orthopoxvirus genus in the family Poxviridae, says the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The Orthopoxvirus genus also includes variola virus which causes smallpox, vaccinia virus (used in the smallpox vaccine) and cowpox virus. 

Monkeypox is transmitted between animals and is generally not contagious from one person to another, says the CDC. 

This is a viral disease characterized by fever, headache, muscle aches, and fatigue, with a typical rash up to 3 days later. The disease usually lasts 2 to 4 weeks and passes by itself without treatment. 

In the fall of 2017, Nigeria saw their 1st confirmed Monkeypox outbreak in nearly 40 years, resulting in more than 200 confirmed and suspected cases. 

Since this outbreak was reportedly controlled during February 2018, a small number of isolated Monkeypox cases have continued to be reported. 

Fortunately, the West African Monkeypox virus is considered to be less virulent and less easily transmitted than its Central African counterpart, says the CDC. 

While Nigeria continues to report low levels of infection, on September 19th, Public Health England (PHE) confirmed 3 Monkeypox cases.   

PHE said in a press release that the IMVANEX smallpox vaccine will be used to vaccinate healthcare workers treating English patients and those involved in the current monkeypox cases.   

Dr. Nick Phin, Deputy Director, National Infection Service at PHE said in a press release, “We know that in September 2017 Nigeria experienced a large sustained outbreak of monkeypox (42 laboratory-confirmed cases) and since then sporadic cases have continued to be reported.” 

“It is likely that monkeypox continues to circulate in Nigeria and could, therefore, affect travelers who are returning from this part of the world.” 

As of October 11, 2018, the CDC had not issued a monkeypox Travel Alert for Nigeria. 

But, the CDC’s travel notice for Nigeria includes the following normal immunizations, such as MMR, diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis, varicella, polio, and the annual flu shot. 

During the 2003 monkeypox outbreak in the USA, the CDC confirmed 37 cases. 

Previous research suggests that the current smallpox vaccine, ACAM2000, is 85 percent effective in preventing monkeypox when given before exposure to monkeypox. 

At this time, ACAM2000 has been stockpiled by the USA federal government for emergencies, and is strictly controlled for biodefense purposes and is not commercially available, according to the CDC. 

Local travel vaccination pharmacies in the USA offer pre-trip counseling sessions. Please visit Vax-Before-Travel to schedule an appointment.