Monkey what? Texas health officials, along with the CDC, have officially announced that a traveler from Nigeria has tested positive for monkeypox. The traveler was making their way from Nigeria by flight and had a layover in Atlanta, Georgia before reaching Dallas, Texas.
According to a report by Dallas Morning News, the individual didn’t check himself into the hospital until four days after arriving in Dallas.
The Dallas Department of Health and Human Services released a statement, saying currently the patient is in a stable condition. According to the CDC, there is very little risk that others were infected with the virus, due to the patient’s lack of interaction with people.
As of right now, they are contact tracing the patients’ steps and checking up on anyone that had interactions with the individual.
What Exactly is Monkeypox?
Monkeypox is a very rare viral illness that is similar to smallpox, but not as deadly. The first known outbreak of it occurred in Denmark on a group of research monkeys in 1958, hence where the illness got its name.
The symptoms of monkeypox are blisters all over the body, fever, and an unbearable rash. According to statistics about one out of ten patients will die from the disease.
The first human case occurred in 1970 in the Congo and has seen small outbreaks in Sudan, the Central African Republic, and the United States.
Flashback to The Midwest Outbreak of Monkeypox in 2003
In 2003, the Midwest saw the first cases of monkeypox in the history of the United States. It all started when an exotic pet store owner in Texas ordered Gambian rats and dormice from Ghana.
Once the exotic pet dealer got them, he housed the rodents with his prairie dogs. Unknown to the pet dealer’s knowledge, the rodents he ordered were infected with monkeypox and spread the illness to his prairie dogs. The pet dealer ended up distributing the prairie dogs that were infected to several Midwest states which caused an outbreak.
All in all, there was a total of 71 people infected with monkeypox; all of those infected had direct contact with the rodents they bought. No human to human transmission occurred; however, according to scientists, there has been cases of human to human transmission of monkeypox in the Congo.
Will Monkeypox Be the Next Worldwide Pandemic?
To answer the question ‘will Monkeypox be the next worldwide pandemic,’ according to the CDC the answer is no; then again the CDC has been wrong before.
The CDC, on several occasions, were wrong when it came to their knowledge about coronavirus airborne transmission. The CDC originally stated that COVID-19 can only spread if you’re within 6 ft of another person.
Later, studies showed the virus is able to infect people through airborne transmission. Instead of just saying they didn’t know, the CDC just made assumptions; this why many Americans are already hesitant to believe anything they say.