The fourth case of monkeypox in Wisconsin has been identified in Langlade County on Wednesday, according to the Langlade County Health Department.
The health department announced Thursday, "the first case of orthopoxvirus, presumed to be monkeypox" was detected. The third case was also identified on Wednesday in Dane County. It is the second confirmed case for the county. Another case was identified in a City of Milwaukee resident on Saturday, July 9.
Health officials say the risk to the public remains low at this time. However, individuals should be aware of monkeypox symptoms and should seek medical attention if they experience any.
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According to the Milwaukee Health Department, "monkeypox is characterized by new, unexplained rashes and skin lesions. Recently identified cases have developed skin lesions in the genital, groin, and anal regions that might be confused with rashes caused by common diseases such as herpes and syphilis. Other early symptoms of monkeypox include fever, chills, and swollen lymph nodes."
Monkeypox can spread to anyone through close, personal, and often skin-to-skin contact. It is primarily spread through direct contact with monkeypox rashes, scabs, or body fluids from a person with monkeypox.
Health officials say, "touching objects, fabrics, and surfaces that have been used by someone with monkeypox or close contact with respiratory secretions can transmit the disease. This contact can happen during intimate contact including oral, anal, and vaginal sex or touching the genitals or anus of a person with monkeypox."
Below are recommendations to prevent the spread of monkeypox, according to the Milwaukee Health Department:
- Avoid close, skin-to-skin contact with the monkeypox rash, including refraining from touching the rash or scabs of person with monkeypox and avoiding kissing, hugging, cuddling or having sex with someone with monkeypox.
- If exposed to monkeypox, contact your healthcare provider as soon as possible and let them know you have symptoms or have been exposed to monkeypox. Healthcare providers can provide testing and care for people who are diagnosed with monkeypox.
- Monitor for fever, chills, swollen lymph nodes and a new, unexplained rash, and contact a health care provider if any of those occur. If you do not have a healthcare provider, contact your local health department for guidance .
- If sick with monkeypox, isolate at home until rash has fully resolved, the scabs have fallen off, and a fresh layer of intact skin has formed.
Most people recover in two to four weeks without needing treatment. Health officials, however, do recommend vaccinations and antiviral medications.
Langlade County is working with the Wisconsin Department of Health Services and other partners on the investigation follow up, the health department said.
For further information on monkeypox, click here.