Maryland health officials confirm monkeypox case
BALTIMORE (AP) — A case of monkeypox has been confirmed in a Maryland resident who recently who recently returned from Nigeria, state health officials announced Tuesday.
The person had mild symptoms and is recovering in isolation, but isn’t hospitalized, the Department of Health said in a news release. The general public doesn’t need to take any special precautions, officials said.
People who may have been in contact with the person who was diagnosed with the illness have been identified and public health authorities are continuing to follow up with them, Deputy Secretary for Public Health Dr. Jinlene Chan said in a statement.
Monkeypox is in the same family of viruses as smallpox but generally causes a milder infection, officials said. It can be spread through direct contact with lesions or body fluids, or contaminated materials like clothing or large respiratory droplets. Illness typically begins with flu-like symptoms and lymph node swelling and progresses to a rash on the face and body. The people who may have been exposed in this case will be monitored for symptoms for 21 days after exposure.
Human monkeypox infections primarily occur in central and western African countries and have only rarely been documented outside of Africa.