"Monkeypox can be tricky to be diagnosed" : CDC Director Rochelle Walensky

New Delhi: 

Rochelle Walensky, MD, MPH, Director of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) told the healthcare professionals and doctors should not rule out monkeypox if a person is found to be infected with a sexually transmitted infection (STI).

“It’s important to be aware that monkeypox cases may present similar to some sexually transmitted infections and could be mistaken for other diagnoses,” she said during a press briefing. “Healthcare providers should not rule out monkeypox just because a patient has another diagnosis or another STI.”

Walensky said some of the 45 confirmed patients in the United States were also diagnosed as having herpes, gonorrhea, or chlamydia at the same time as the monkeypox diagnosis. The CDC also said that, among those 45, at least 75% had traveled internationally before contacting the disease.

Only a small number of patients are unsure of where they contacted the poxvirus.

“In all likelihood, they acquired it from someone who recently traveled, but they’re just not sure,” said Jennifer McQuiston, DVM, the deputy director of the Division of High-Consequence Pathogens and Pathology at the CDC.

CDC emphasizes on close contact

The CDC, in a media statement yesterday, also offered clarity on monkeypox transmission, all but ruling out airborne transmission and instead emphasizing close, sustained personal contact, such as the skin-to-skin contact maintained during sexual activities.

“In the current monkeypox outbreak, we know that those with disease generally describe close, sustained physical contact with other people who are infected with the virus. We continue to study other possible modes of transmission, such as through semen,” the CDC said.

“While we do not know with certainty what role direct physical contact has versus the role of respiratory secretions, in instances where people who have monkeypox have travelled on airplanes, no known cases of monkeypox occurred in people seated around them, even on long international flights.”

The CDC recommends that those confirmed as having monkeypox wear a well-fitted mask if they must be close to others in the home or a healthcare setting.

The agency also 


it’s not sure if the disease spreads via contact with people who are infected with monkeypox but have no symptoms.


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