Canada confirms two cases of monkeypox

The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) confirmed on Thursday that two people tested positive for monkeypoxafter interacting with a US citizen who allegedly contracted the disease before or during his visit to Montreal, Quebec.

Canadian healthcare institutions identified that two citizens had signs and symptoms that may be consistent with the infection for monkeypox, since the National Microbiology Laboratory (NML) has tested them to confirm or rule out the virus that causes the disease.

The agency said it was working with the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and public health authorities in the province of Quebec to investigate potential exposure and contacts of monkeypox cases recently identified in the United States.

It is a zoonotic infectious disease present in parts of West and Central Africa, causing occasional human infections, usually associated with exposure to infected animals or contaminated material.

Limited cases have been identified in other regions in the past, including United Kingdom, United States, Israel and Singapore. For recent international cases, it is not yet known how the individuals were exposed to the monkeypox virus.

Person-to-person spread of monkeypox is rare, notes PHAC. However, when spread occurs between people, mode of transmission is through close contact with an infected personfor example, through direct contact with their bodily fluids, respiratory droplets, or monkeypox sores, or by sharing clothes, pajamas, or communal items that have been contaminated with the infected person’s fluids or sores.

As with many other diseases transmitted by close contact, people can reduce their risk by keeping a physical distancefrequent hand and respiratory hygiene, including the use of masks, asserts itself as Canada’s highest health organization.

He also urged Canadians to be aware of the symptoms of monkeypox and to report any concerns to their primary care physician. Signs and symptoms of monkeypox can usually include fever, headache, muscle aches, exhaustion and swelling of the lymph nodes, and a rash that often appears a few days after the onset of symptoms such as fever.

The agency alerted public health authorities working with health care providers look for patients who have signs or symptoms consistent with monkeypox, whether they have reported travel or have specific risk factors for monkeypox.

This is an ever-evolving survey, both in Canada and around the world. More information is needed to assess whether there are increased health risks to people in Canada. PHAC will continue to provide updates to the public as new information becomes available.

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