The Douglas County Health Department has reported its third suspected case of the monkeypox virus and said it’s too early to know if the person is a known contact to a confirmed case.
Contact tracing has started, and the affected person, who is receiving outpatient care, is helping with that investigation, said a media statement Friday night from Lindsay Huse, county health director.
Monkeypox is spread through direct contact with an infected person’s rash, scabs or body fluids or through respiratory secretions during prolonged intimate contact.
No additional information is being released on the latest patient.
Douglas County on June 27 reported the state’s first identified case of monkeypox, a male in his 30s with recent international travel. A second probable case was reported July 5.
County health officials believe risk to the public remains low, but anyone with the characteristic rash resembling monkeypox is advised to contact their health care provider. The rash looks like pimples or blisters, typically.
The county’s statement said the outbreak is disproportionately affecting men who have sex with men and individuals meeting partners through online websites, apps or social events. Anyone who has traveled to an area with ongoing monkeypox transmission and observes a rash typical of the disease is advised to seek medical evaluation.
No specific treatment exists for monkeypox, but some antivirals have been used effectively. More than 12,000 cases of monkeypox have been reported worldwide, with more than 1,800 reported in the United States and its territories.
Symptoms resemble those of smallpox but are milder. Monkeypox sometimes starts with a fever, headache, muscle aches, swollen lymph nodes and exhaustion. The incubation period generally is seven to 14 days but can range from five days to three weeks.
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