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How monkeypox is spreading in Sacramento County

Millions of people celebrating the holiday weekend have some concerns about the spread of monkeypox. The virus has appeared in over a dozen countries, including the United States and this week, the second suspected case was identified in Sacramento County. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed California’s first case to be in the county and from someone who recently traveled to Europe. The cases do not concern local doctors though, who say the virus is extremely difficult to transmit.“This is not something you’re going to get just by eating in a restaurant next to them or going to the grocery market or even being on the subway or a bus,” said Dr. Vanessa Walker, who sat down with KCRA 3 to discuss the facts on the lethality and transmissibility of monkeypox.“We have so many other things to be concerned about right now, this is definitely not one of them,” Walker said.Walker explained the virus is transmitted through ‘extremely close contact’ like:Skin to skin contact with an open blister or infected soreHandling bedding of someone with the virusGetting particles shed by an infected person in the mouth, eyes or other mucous membranesThe CDC, World Health Organization and local doctors say monkeypox is anywhere from 1-10% lethal depending on the strain; noting the current strain is in the range of 1%, which are lethality rates in developing nations.For perspective on transmission, Walker explained that a person with monkeypox will on average infect less than one person. Compare that to the transmissibility of the current COVID-19 variant, which for every one infected person 15 will likely become infected, Walker said.“This is the virus we’ve known about for 60 years, we’ve studied it, we have vaccines to treat it, we have antivirals that we can use for it, this is not COVID, it’s not going to spread worldwide or disrupt our everyday lives,” Walker said.| VIDEO BELOW | Wisconsin monkeypox survivor recalls 2003 outbreakThe WHO explains that monkeypox and smallpox do come from the same virus family, though the CDC says the two spread at different rates and widely vary in lethality.Smallpox was declared eradicated worldwide in 1980 due to the smallpox vaccine.Medical officials say people who have received smallpox vaccines have increased immunity to monkeypox. Those with the smallpox vaccine typically were born prior to the 1970s. The surgeon general of the United States Public Health Service discontinued routine primary smallpox vaccination for American children in 1971.Sacramento County health officials say both individuals diagnosed with monkeypox are quarantined in their own homes.According to county health officials, symptoms to be aware of are swollen lymph nodes, flu-like symptoms or new rashes.| VIDEO BELOW | Sacramento County Public Health Officer Dr. Kasirye talks about likely monkeypox case

Millions of people celebrating the holiday weekend have some concerns about the spread of monkeypox.

The virus has appeared in over a dozen countries, including the United States and this week, the second suspected case was identified in Sacramento County. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed California’s first case to be in the county and from someone who recently traveled to Europe.

The cases do not concern local doctors though, who say the virus is extremely difficult to transmit.

“This is not something you’re going to get just by eating in a restaurant next to them or going to the grocery market or even being on the subway or a bus,” said Dr. Vanessa Walker, who sat down with KCRA 3 to discuss the facts on the lethality and transmissibility of monkeypox.

“We have so many other things to be concerned about right now, this is definitely not one of them,” Walker said.

Walker explained the virus is transmitted through ‘extremely close contact’ like:

  • Skin to skin contact with an open blister or infected sore
  • Handling bedding of someone with the virus
  • Getting particles shed by an infected person in the mouth, eyes or other mucous membranes

The CDC, World Health Organization and local doctors say monkeypox is anywhere from 1-10% lethal depending on the strain; noting the current strain is in the range of 1%, which are lethality rates in developing nations.

For perspective on transmission, Walker explained that a person with monkeypox will on average infect less than one person. Compare that to the transmissibility of the current COVID-19 variant, which for every one infected person 15 will likely become infected, Walker said.

“This is the virus we’ve known about for 60 years, we’ve studied it, we have vaccines to treat it, we have antivirals that we can use for it, this is not COVID, it’s not going to spread worldwide or disrupt our everyday lives,” Walker said.

| VIDEO BELOW | Wisconsin monkeypox survivor recalls 2003 outbreak

The WHO explains that monkeypox and smallpox do come from the same virus family, though the CDC says the two spread at different rates and widely vary in lethality.

Smallpox was declared eradicated worldwide in 1980 due to the smallpox vaccine.

Medical officials say people who have received smallpox vaccines have increased immunity to monkeypox. Those with the smallpox vaccine typically were born prior to the 1970s. The surgeon general of the United States Public Health Service discontinued routine primary smallpox vaccination for American children in 1971.

Sacramento County health officials say both individuals diagnosed with monkeypox are quarantined in their own homes.

According to county health officials, symptoms to be aware of are swollen lymph nodes, flu-like symptoms or new rashes.

| VIDEO BELOW | Sacramento County Public Health Officer Dr. Kasirye talks about likely monkeypox case

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