Four more cases of monkeypox have been discovered in England, according to health officials, but they are unrelated to the previous three cases.
The new instances bring the country’s total to seven. Travel to a place where the virus is endemic, such as west and central Africa, is not associated to the cases.
According to the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), the virus is difficult to spread between persons and poses a low danger to the general public. One in every ten people infected with the virus dies.
It did say, however, that the most recent cases were among gay and bisexual men, and that these groups should be aware of any strange rashes or lesions on their bodies.
On May 7, the first case of monkeypox was verified in England, followed by two more cases a week later.
The first instance was a person who had recently travelled to Nigeria and is thought to have contracted the virus there.
According to NHS England, the infection can be spread by infected wild animals in west and central Africa, such as rats, mice, and squirrels.
Monkeypox is “exceptionally rare” to catch from a person, according to NHS England, but it can be shared by contacting someone with the rash’s clothing, bedding, or towels.
The recent instances, according to the UKHSA, have no connection to travel to a nation where the illness is endemic. They also have no known ties to the previously reported instances.
Those who require medical attention are being treated in specialist infectious disease departments at Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary and London’s Royal Free, Guy’s, and St Thomas’ hospitals.
The patients have the west African sub-group of the infection, which is milder than the central African sub-group, according to the UKHSA.
“This is rare and unusual,” said Dr Susan Hopkins, the UKHSA’s top medical adviser. The UKHSA is examining the source of these infections as soon as possible because evidence suggests that the monkeypox infection is being transmitted in the community through close contact.
“We especially encourage homosexual and bisexual men to be aware of any strange rashes or lesions and to seek medical help as soon as possible.”
“Any prospective close connections of the cases are being contacted for health information and guidance.”
Anyone who thinks they may have been infected should see a doctor.