CDC Says 200 People in Danger of Exposure to Monkeypox

Reader Warning: this article contains disturbing images.

Another day, another disease. This time it’s called monkeypox, an infectious disease that’s related to smallpox. Smallpox is another pox virus that’s been blamed for the death of entire civilizations, such as the Aztecs in the past. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says there are currently over 200 people in America who might have been exposed in 27 states. The first confirmed case here happened when a man from Dallas, Texas went to Nigeria for a few weeks. 

What is Monkeypox?

Monkeypox is a virus that’s most common in West and Central Africa. It was first found in lab monkeys, which is where the name comes from. The disease mostly spreads from animals to humans, but also spreads human-to-human. 

You can catch monkeypox by touching sores, breathing in droplets, body fluids, and touching things the infected person has touched. When you get monkeypox, you get a high fever, a rash, and sore lymph nodes.

You then begin having painful bumps on your skin. Around 10% of people with monkeypox die, especially among those younger in age. As you can see, this is a very, very serious disease. 

Details of US Case

The man who has been diagnosed with monkeypox arrived July 9 from Nigeria to Dallas’ Love Field Airport. He is hospitalized and in stable condition. However, the CDC’s poxvirus chief Andrea McCollum says “a lot of people” may have been infected overall across 27 states. 

No more cases have been confirmed yet. However, anyone who sat close to the monkeypox-positive man is in danger; that includes airplane employees, passengers, people close to him in the airport, and anyone else within six feet. 

How Dangerous is Monkeypox?

In addition to the painful bumps, fever, and illness, monkeypox kills around one in ten of the people it infects, as I mentioned. However, it is not nearly as serious as smallpox which wiped out the Aztecs. Basically, monkeypox gives you a bad case of flu and causes an ugly rash and bumps. 

If it’s not treated properly, monkeypox can clearly be a nasty disease, and it can require hospitalization. Our public health officials should be doing everything they can to contain this one case and isolate all those who may have been exposed to this awful virus. 

We’ve had monkeypox on our shores before, but the outbreak was contained in the end. America already had a monkeypox outbreak back in 2003 after infected rats from the African nation of Ghana got out from an unsecured trade shipping container. 

Even though Dallas County public health leaders say there is “very little” risk to the public at this time, the story shows just how much else is out there other than COVID. Take care and be safe.