What you need to know now that monkeypox already has community transmission in Brazil – News

the status of monkey pox noBrazil is of community transmission, which means that the virus has already infected people who have not traveled or had contact with anyone who has been in countries where there is an outbreak of the disease. In this scenario, some care must be redoubled not only in everyday life, but also in health services.

In a recent interview with R7virologist Camila Malta, a researcher at the Medical Investigation Laboratory at the Hospital das Clínicas at FMUSP (School of Medicine at the University of São Paulo) and at the Institute of Tropical Medicine, explained that surveillance should increase.

“Since we already have the disease circulating around here, a clinician cannot simply rule out a diagnosis of monkeypox by [fato de o] patient has not traveled. The person may not have had contact with anyone and still have contracted [o vírus]. The attention of doctors and surveillance bodies should turn to this information,” he says.

Infectologist José Ângelo Lindoso, coordinator of the Neglected Diseases Group at the Instituto de Infectologia Emílio Ribas, in São Paulo, highlights that, despite monkeypox being a known virus, the way monkeypox has manifested itself clinically is different from that seen in Africawhere the disease is endemic in some countries.

“Monkeypox is primarily affecting men who have sex with men, this is a key epidemiological feature of this current outbreak. We still don’t know for sure if the transmission [também] is sexual, but the vast majority of cases that have already been described, including those [infectados] who went to the Emílio Ribas institution, almost all of them had genital lesions”, says the specialist.

It is worth mentioning that, although the group formed by homosexuals concentrates a large part of the cases of monkeypox nowadays, the disease is not exclusive to this population.

O virus can infect anyone, from children to the elderly, just contact with the secretion from the blisters caused by the infection, as well as sharing objects with infected people or even contact with the secretion of infected animals. The transmission of monkeypox is also possible from mother to child during pregnancy.

Another point is that it is not yet known, for example, if asymptomatic people can transmit the virus, or even if the proportion of people who are infected and do not show symptoms is similar to that of those who develop the clinical picture of monkeypox.

Although the risks of infection by monkeypox have increased with community transmission in the country, virologist Camila Malta points out that the virus is not as contagious as the one that causes Covid-19for example, which, even so, does not diminish the care that people should have at this time.

“It was expected that [a transmissão local do vírus] would happen. In countries where this disease was detected, it ended up having community transmission a few weeks later. It is a disease [transmitida] by fluids, towel use, contaminated clothing. Therefore, if the person lives with someone or shares utensils or clothes with someone else, there is a possibility of transmission”, explains Camila.

With the possibility of the virus spreading open and the questions about the disease that still have no answer, infectious disease specialist José Ângelo Lindoso emphasizes the importance of the Ministry of Health’s actions to mitigate the impact of monkeypox in the country.

“We’ve seen how slow the federal government has responded to the Covid situation, so this is an issue. Are we prepared to quickly organize preventive actions or at least reduce the risk of illness? The disease is not very serious, that’s ok, but the more people there are sick, the risk of having the severe form increases. Having 1,000 cases is different from having 100,000, the scenario changes completely,” she says.

disease monitoring

O Ministry of Health released, on May 23,, the creation of a Situation Room to monitor monkeypox in Brazil. The objective is to develop an action plan for the tracking of suspected cases and the definition of the clinical and laboratory diagnosis of the disease.

However, beyond that, nothing was disclosed about containment measures, not even after transmission became community-based.

For the infectologist, it is important that the ministry think about the elaboration of public policies to serve the most affected group at this time, not only to assist in prevention, but also to avoid stigmatization of these people.

“It is important to disseminate the correct information in the media and work with specific NGOs that work directly with this group. We can’t leave them vulnerable. [os indivíduos]. It is a time to get organized, even because of the little understanding we have of the disease and its transmission”, says Lindoso.

One of the prevention strategies that could be used, according to the infectologist, is to encourage the condom use during sexual intercourseeven though there is still no confirmation on the possibility of the virus being transmitted sexually.

“There are very few works that have detected the virus DNA in the seminal fluid, but that doesn’t mean the virus is alive there. Now there will be other studies on this issue. The use of condoms is a point that should be greatly reinforced, raising awareness is essential, because it is not enough to just provide [preservativo]. We are building new information about a new disease, although monkeypox is known from the point of view of transmission, it is a new format that we are seeing”, says the infectologist.

In some countries, such as the United States, the vaccination against monkeypox was established for people exposed to the virus, which includes men who have had sex with men in regions where there is a record of an outbreak. In Brazil, on the other hand, the topic has not yet been discussed.

The infectologist explains that there is no consensus on vaccination, especially regarding the need for mass vaccination, as the world is still going through the Covid-19 pandemic, with laboratories producing vaccines against the coronavirus on a large scale.

We do not have the vaccine production capacity in Brazil to carry out mass vaccination. First we have to see which population we are going to focus on, then think about what we want with the vaccine, if it is to prevent illness or prevent infection, which are different things”, explains the infectious disease specialist.

Understand how monkeypox is transmitted, what are the symptoms of monkeypox and what treatments are available:

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