First monkeypox case detected in Türkiye: Minister

First monkeypox case detected in Türkiye: Minister

First monkeypox case detected in Türkiye: Minister

Health Minister Fahrettin Koca announced that Türkiye’s first case of monkeypox virus has been reported in a 37-year-old patient.

The patient has immunodeficiency and is in isolation, Koca said on June 30.

“Contact tracing has found no other cases,” the minister said, reiterating that the disease spreads through close physical contact.

As in smallpox, complaints such as fever, headache, muscle aches, chills and redness and blisters on the skin occur in those who are infected with the monkeypox virus.

According to experts, symptoms disappear within a few weeks, and it is a far less dangerous disease than smallpox, which kills 30 percent of those infected.

As of June 22 this year, 3,413 laboratory confirmed cases and one death have been reported to the World Health Organization (WHO). With 86 percent of the cases from Europe, and the death was reported in Nigeria in the second quarter of 2022.

Countries such as the U.K. with 793 cases, Germany with 521, Spain with 520, Portugal with 317, France with 277 and the Netherlands with 167, are at the top of the list.

“People wonder whether this disease will require closure as in COVID-19. We do not expect this, theoretically, we think that its contagion can be controlled,” said Esra Ergün Alış, an infectious diseases and microbiology expert.

“In fact, it is a disease with a very low fatality rate. We can define the epidemic as a disease seen more than it should be.”

“It is a disease that can cause symptoms such as swelling, fever and ache in the lymph nodes,” Ergün Alış said adding that the biggest transmission route is skin contact, but it can also be transmitted sexually.

The expert also pointed out that another risk is that the people who care for these patients come into contact with the patients’ belongings such as laundry and sheets.

“This is important especially for healthcare professionals.”

“It is important to use gloves, aprons and personal protective equipment when changing sheets or such things for people who care for the infected patients.”

“In monkeypox virus, the lesions begin in the areas seen, first, on the face or hands. It becomes contagious after it starts, so when a lesion appears, you can recognize it as contagious and isolate yourself immediately,” Ergün Alış added.

According to the expert, the second advantageous point is the previous studies, vaccines and developed drugs.

“The coronavirus pandemic is not over yet,” said the expert, while warning people to comply with the vaccination periods and take the necessary precautions.

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