A 38-year-old man has been diagnosed with monkeypox in Hungary, Cecília Müller, the chief medical officer said on Tuesday. He is the first person in the country to be diagnosed with the disease.
The possible circumstances of the infection are being investigated. Samples collected from the man were delivered to the National Public Health Center (NNK) on Monday, and the authorities ran the necessary tests on Tuesday, Müller said.
Monkeypox is a zoonosis that spreads from human to human with close contact, and in rare cases via objects such as bedlinen and towels, and occasionally through sneezing and coughing, Müller said.
Symptoms include feeling unwell, head and muscle aches, swollen lymph nodes, and later pustules on the hands and body. The illness normally lasts two to four weeks, she said. Patients have to be isolated for that period, she said.
Smallpox vaccines have been shown to protect against monkeypox if administered within four days after close contact with an infected person, she said.
In response to a question Cecília Müller said that the smallpox vaccine can only be used in justified cases, on medical advice and in hospital conditions.
The duration of the administration of the smallpox vaccine is limited, so close contact with a patient with proven monkeypox is only recommended if less than four days have passed since contact.
The Chief Medical Officer also said that in general, a monkeypox patient will recover on their own within two weeks without any therapy.
Featured photo illustration by Tamás Kovács/MTI