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What is Mpox?
Mpox (formerly called Monkeypox) is a rare disease caused by infection with the Mpox virus. Mpox virus is part of the same family of viruses that causes smallpox. Mpox symptoms are similar to smallpox symptoms, but milder, and Mpox is rarely fatal. Mpox is not related to chickenpox.
What are the symptoms of Mpox?
Symptoms of Mpox can include:
-Muscle aches and backache
-Swollen lymph nodes
A rash can look like pimples or blisters that appear on the face, inside the mouth, and on other parts of the body, like the hands, feet, chest, genitals, or anus.
How long do symptoms last?
The rash goes through different stages before healing completely. The illness typically lasts 2-4 weeks. Sometimes, people get a rash first, followed by other symptoms. Others may only experience a rash.
How does someone get infected with the Mpox virus?
Mpox spreads in different ways. The virus can spread from person-to-person through:
-direct contact with infectious rash, scabs, or bodily fluids.
-respiratory secretions during prolonged, face-to-face contact, or during intimate physical contact, such as kissing, cuddling, or sex.
-touching items (such as clothing or linens) that previously touched the infectious rash or body fluids.
-pregnant people can spread the virus to their fetus through the placenta.
What should I do if I think I have symptoms?
Contact your healthcare provider. You should call ahead if visiting a hospital emergency room or walk-in clinic to notify them that you may be infected with Mpox virus.
Is there testing available to see if I am infected?
Diagnostic testing for Mpox is now available from commercial laboratories, including Aegis Sciences, LabCorp, Mayo Clinic, Quest, and Sonic Healthcare. Healthcare providers can order testing from these laboratories as they would order other diagnostic tests.
How to protect yourself
Take the following steps to prevent getting Mpox:
Avoid close, skin-to-skin contact with people who have a rash that looks like Mpox
-Do not touch the rash or scabs of a person with Mpox.
-Do not kiss, hug, cuddle, or have sex with someone with Mpox.
Avoid contact with objects and materials that a person with Mpox has used.
-Do not share eating utensils or cups with a person with Mpox.
-Do not handle or touch the bedding, towels, or clothing of a person with Mpox.
Wash your hands often with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer, especially before eating or touching your face and after you use the bathroom.
CDC Mpox Homepage: https://www.cdc.gov/poxvirus/mpox/index.html
Important Information to Know
Getting vaccinated after a recent exposure may reduce the chance of you getting Mpox, and it can reduce symptoms if you do get it. CDC does not recommend widespread vaccination against Mpox at this time. However, vaccination may be recommended for some people who:
Are close personal contacts of people with Mpox
May have been exposed to the virus
May have an increased risk of being exposed to the virus
Mpox Vaccine FAQ: https://portal.ct.gov/-/media/DPH/Monkeypox/Monkeypox-Vaccinations/MPX-Vaccine-FAQ-09092022.pdf
The current Mpox outbreak has affected some populations more than others. While anyone can contract Mpox, the JYNNEOS vaccine is currently recommended for people who meet at least one of the following:
-People who engage in sex with multiple partners, anonymous partners, or participate in group sex; OR
-People whose partners engage in sex with multiple partners, anonymous partners, or participate in group sex; OR
-People who engage in transactional sex (including sex in exchange for money, food, shelter or other goods); OR
-People who know or suspect that they have been exposed to Mpox in the last 14 days; OR
-Anyone else who considers themselves to be at risk for Mpox through sex or other intimate contact.
-Vaccination is highly recommended for people who are at risk for Mpox and are living with HIV or have a condition that weakens the immune system.
People need to get both doses of the vaccine for the best protection against Mpox.
Getting vaccinated after a recent exposure may reduce the chance of you getting Mpox, and it can reduce symptoms if you do get it. Vaccination is not recommended for individuals with current Mpox illness. Persons with Mpox symptoms who have had close personal contact with someone with known monkeypox in the past 14 days should contact their health care provider.
How to obtain vaccine:
If you are eligible to be vaccinated, you can find a list of clinic locations and contact information by visiting: