Grand Rapids, Mitch (Wood) – The first monkey disease has been found in Kent County, the Kent County Health Department announced Monday.
The health department is isolating the infected person and “does not pose a threat to the public,” he said. Officials said the patient had recently traveled outside the state and had close contact with a monkey. The patient was negatively diagnosed with other diseases, such as monkey pox.
Any close contact will be monitored for symptoms, the health department said. No other issues found.
Monkey pox is a rare but potentially fatal disease. It is spread from person to person through direct contact with body fluids or monkeypox. According to the Department of Health, long-term contact or exposure to contaminants can be transmitted by airborne droplets, but this is not uncommon.
“It’s very rare. It’s a very low risk to the community, but because there are so many other diseases, it’s important to have specific information about monkey disease, and it goes hand in hand with travel and vulnerability, ”said Kathy Armstrong from the health department. “If they don’t have travel or exposure or any other high-risk behavior, it’s not really a concern.”
She says the disease affects small people.
Armstrong: “Unlike Kovid, it can be widely distributed.
The incubation period is one to two weeks after exposure. Symptoms include headache, fever, muscle aches and fatigue. Rash and sores usually start on the face one to three days before the onset of the disease. The disease usually lasts two to four weeks.
Anyone who is experiencing the symptoms will be consulted with the health care provider.
There is no specific treatment for the monkey virus, but the virus is genetically similar to smallpox, according to the Ministry of Health. This means that antiviral drugs and vaccines designed to prevent smallpox can be used to prevent and treat monkeypox.
“Most people do not currently need a monkey vaccine. However, if you are in contact with an infected person, you should contact your healthcare provider, the health department said in a statement.
– News 8 Jacqueline Francis contributed to this report.