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On Wednesday, Massachusetts health officials reported a rare case of monkeypox in a man who had just been to Canada, and officials are investigating if it is linked to tiny outbreaks in Europe.
Monkeypox is mainly found only in Africa, and instances in the United States and abroad are largely linked to travel there. This month in the United Kingdom, Portugal, and Spain, a small number of confirmed or suspected cases have been reported.
As part of the probe, US health officials have communicated with officials in the United Kingdom and Canada. “At this moment,” Jennifer McQuiston of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said, “we don’t have any information that links the Massachusetts case to cases in the United Kingdom.”
“I do believe we are preparing for the prospect of further instances,” she said, despite the fact that it is the CDC’s only US case.
The Massachusetts citizen is hospitalized but in good condition, according to officials, and the case poses no risk to the public.
According to McQuiston, the man went to Canada to see pals at the end of April and returned in early May. He took private transportation, according to the CDC.
This is the year’s first instance in the United States. Last year, people who traveled to Nigeria in Texas and Maryland each reported a case.
Monkeypox is characterized by a flu-like illness, lymph node enlargement, and a rash on the face and body. People in Africa have been affected by rodent or small animal bites, and the disease does not spread quickly.
However, authorities in Europe say the majority of cases have been in gay or bisexual men, and regulators are investigating if any illnesses were transferred through intimate contact during sex.
The viruses that cause monkeypox and smallpox are related.
The Congo strain is more severe, with up to 10% mortality, whereas the West African strain has a fatality rate of less than 1% of cases. The West African strain has caused the least number of cases in the UK.