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July, 2022

Monkeypox: Causes, Symptoms, Treatment, and Prevention

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Monkeypox is considered a rare medical phenomenon that is caused by the monkeypox virus. The virus comes from the same family of viruses, namely the Variola virus which is also responsible for causing smallpox.

Because of the familiarity between the viruses, the symptoms of monkeypox are almost similar to smallpox. Moreover, because of the milder effects of the virus, monkeypox is not deadly.

Monkeypox was first discovered in 1958 when a pox-like disease occurred in the lab between the colonies of monkeys used for research purposes. Although, this occurrence influenced the terminology “Monkeypox”, the source of the disease is still unknown. 

The first-ever human case of monkeypox occurred in 1970. Before the 2022 outbreak that took place globally, monkeypox cases were primarily noticed in several central and western African countries. The reason behind the global outbreak is the internationally interlinked travel between countries.


The cause behind monkeypox in animals and humans is the infection with the monkeypox virus. This virus is a double standard DNA virus in the Orthopoxvirus, which is a family of Poxviridae. The major cause of monkeypox in humans is the infected animal. Although, the transmission of the virus remains unknown. Many researchers have claimed that the virus enters the body through the respiratory tract, broken skin, and mucous membranes.

Apart from that, the transmission of the virus from one infected person to another is also possible. This human-to-human transference may occur during sexual intercourse, meanwhile, the animal-to-human transmission may occur through a bite, scratch, direct contact with lesion material, or indirect contact with lesion material.


Once infected, you would notice the symptoms manifest within 21 days. Although further research about the transmission of the strain of the virus is still undergoing, we have compiled a list of symptoms of monkeypox based on the fact that it is not different from the other strains of the West African clade. The symptoms are, 

  • Acute headache
  • Fever
  • Muscle aches
  • Backache
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Exhaustion
  • Chills 

A rash that appears on the face, inside the mouth, feet, chest, genital or anus. The rash looks like pimples or blisters.

The healing procedure of the rash occurs in stages. However, it would last around 2 - 4 weeks before subsiding. Depending on the severity of the infection, you would get a rash first followed by other typical symptoms. If you notice any of the symptoms, we recommend you consult a doctor from Sakra hospital to acquire medicine.


There is no set-in-stone methodology of treatments specifically for monkeypox virus infections. However, given the fact that monkeypox and smallpox viruses are genetically the same, the antiviral medicine for smallpox can be used to prevent and cure monkeypox-affected individuals.

Antivirals, namely Tecovirimat, or TPOXX, are administered to people with weak immunity systems. If you have noticed the symptoms of monkeypox, you must consult the healthcare provider in Sakra Hospital, the best ENT hospital in Bangalore.


Prevention is always recommended, no matter the illness. Following, we have mentioned a few preventive steps that would go a long way. 

Avoid getting close to affected people. It includes not touching the rash, or scabs of the affected individuals, and not kissing, hugging or cuddling with them. Do not share eating utensils with the affected person.
Touching or handling the bedding, towels, or clothing of a person affected with monkeypox is a no-no as well.
Sanitise your hand and wash them with soap occasionally. The sanitizer must be alcohol-based.
If you reside in Central or West Africa, avoid contact with animals that can spread the virus.
Don’t go near any dead or sick animals. Keep in mind to not touch their bedding and the materials that the affected animals might have touched.

If you are affected by the monkeypox virus, you have to do the following,

  • Isolating yourself is the key.
  • If you have an active rash, you must stay in a separate room so that you don’t run the risk of contamination.

CDC recommends getting vaccinated for people who are affected by the monkeypox virus. In addition to this, CDC also states that individuals who satisfy the following criteria must get vaccinated as well. 

  • Those who have been identified by public health officials as someone affected by the monkeypox virus.
  • People who have been exposed to the monkeypox virus through having sexual intercourse with an affected person within 2 weeks of their vaccination.
  • People whose jobs may expose them to the said virus, which includes but is not limited to,
  • Those who work in the laboratory to perform testing for orthopoxviruses
  • Laboratory workers who work around animals with orthopoxviruses
  • Healthcare or public health workers

In case you are running the risk of being exposed to the monkeypox virus, contact Sakra Hospital to get in touch with the best ENT doctor in Bangalore for further treatment.



Dr Subrata Das

Senior Consultant - Internal Medicine & Diabetology

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