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INVITED REVIEW ARTICLE
Year : 2023  |  Volume : 23  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 5-16

Monkeypox: A current emergency global health threat


1 Institute of Public Health, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, United Arab Emirates University, Al-Ain, United Arab Emirates
2 Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, United Arab Emirates University, Al-Ain, United Arab Emirates
3 Department of Virology, Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust, Manchester, UK
4 The Research Office, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, United Arab Emirates University, Al-Ain, United Arab Emirates

Correspondence Address:
Fikri M Abu-Zidan
College of Medicine and Health Sciences, United Arab Emirates University, Al-Ain
United Arab Emirates
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/2452-2473.366487

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Monkeypox (MPXV) is an emerging zoonotic disease carrying a global health threat. Using a multi-disciplinary approach, we review the current MPXV virus infection outbreak including virology, prevention, clinical presentation, and disaster management. MPXV is caused by a double-stranded deoxyribonucleic acid virus. Despite its clinical similarities with smallpox, it is less severe with low mortality. Human-to-human transmission occurs through prolonged direct or close contact, or through blood, body fluids, or mucosal lesions. Risk groups include frontline health workers who care for MPXV patients, household members of an infected patient, and men who have sex with men. Skin lesions are usually, but not always, at the same stage. They may affect the face followed by the distal extremities with fewer lesions on the trunk (centrifugal distribution). Lesions may involve the mouth, genitalia, conjunctiva, and rectum. The majority of cases are mild. Nevertheless, the disease may have long-term effects on the skin, the neurological system, and the eye. Vaccination against MPXV is available but meanwhile should be limited to those who are at high risk. Those vaccinated against smallpox (usually older than 40 years) might be immune against MPXV. Infectious diseases are without borders. If proper action is not taken, there is considerable risk that MPXV will be entrenched worldwide. Our world has a delicate balance between animals, environment, and humans reflecting the need for a “one globe, one health approach” to address this risk. Following the principles of disaster management and using the lessons we have learned from the COVID-19 pandemic will reduce the impact of the MPXV outbreak.


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