WHO exemplifies Turkish patient for ‘stopping monkeypox outbreak’
Highlighting that the monkeypox outbreak can be stopped, the World Health Organization (WHO) gave a 35-year-old Turkish citizen who was discharged from an U.K. hospital after 11 days of monkeypox treatment as an example of the issue.
Harun Tulunay, who lives in Shoreditch, North London, was struck with a fever reaching 40 degrees Celsius. As his COVID-19 test was negative and a small lesion appeared on his nose, he was hospitalized for 11 days for monkeypox.
Tulunay, an advocate at sexual health charity Positively U.K., said he could not swallow his own spit and feared he would die.
“Doctors told me that I was one of the most severe monkeypox cases they had treated,” he said to the U.K. media outlets and added: “I developed excruciating pain throughout my body that felt like ripping off your flesh from your bones.”
“I thought I was going to die.”
Tulunay, who was also diagnosed with HIV in 2016, is one of 2,137 confirmed monkeypox cases in the U.K. since an unusual outbreak across at least 50 countries started in May.
For 11 days, he was treated with tecovirimat, an antiviral agent developed for smallpox and now licensed for monkeypox by the European Medicines Agency (EMA).
Making a comparison between COVID-19 and monkeypox, Tulunay said, “It was worse than COVID, which I have had twice.”
Discharged from the hospital after almost two weeks of treatment, he became a good example in the fight against monkeypox for the medicine world.
“We believe the monkeypox outbreak can be stopped,” the WHO said in a statement on July 26.
The United Nations uploaded Tulunay’s photos of recovery on its website.
When asked what he thinks of it all, the Turkish man said, “I want to share my story to educate people and normalize the conversation around monkeypox.”
Monkeypox is a viral zoonosis (a virus transmitted to humans from animals) with the infection divided into two periods.
The invasion period, with lasts between zero and five days, characterized by fever, intense headache, lymphadenopathy (swelling of the lymph nodes), back pain, myalgia (muscle aches) and intense asthenia (lack of energy).
The skin eruption usually begins within one to three days of appearance of fever. The rash tends to be more concentrated on the face and extremities rather than on the trunk. It affects the face in 95 percent of cases.