Monkeypox is a rare disease caused by infection with the monkeypox virus. Monkeypox virus is part of the same family of viruses as variola virus, the virus that causes smallpox. Monkeypox symptoms are similar to smallpox symptoms, but milder, and monkeypox is rarely fatal. Monkeypox is not related to chickenpox. Monkeypox was discovered in 1958 when two outbreaks of a pox-like disease occurred in colonies of monkeys kept for research. Despite being named “monkeypox,” the source of the disease remains unknown. However, African rodents and non-human primates (like monkeys) might harbor the virus and infect people.CDC
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The virus does not spread through the air. You need to be in close physical contact with someone to get it.
“It’s not sexually transmitted necessarily. It can be passed through intimate contact or close physical contact with someone with the pustules or the rash from monkeypox,” said Nigel Turner, the Communicable Disease Control division director with Tacoma-Pierce County Public Health.
But with summer in full swing, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is warning people with plans like going to concerts or clubs. On its website, the CDC says a party “where there is minimal clothing and where there is direct, personal, often skin-to-skin contact has some risk.”
“Avoid any rash you see on others,” the CDC advises. Events where people are “fully clothed and unlikely to share skin-to-skin contact are safer,” the CDC says.
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