Brazilian health authorities Friday confirmed the first death linked to monkeypox in the country: a 41-year-old man, who was already under treatment for other diseases, including cancer, which caused the worsening of his health condition.
The man, whose name was not disclosed, had been admitted to a public hospital in Belo Horizonte, where he suffered a septic shock, aggravated by monkeypox. The official cause of death was septic shock.
The Minas Gerais Health Secretariat also pointed out in a statement that the patient had been already hospitalized due to other serious clinical conditions.
The secretariat also reported there were 130 other cases under investigation. In Belo Horizonte alone, a case of community transmission was registered, i.e., when there is no longer any way to identify the place where the person was infected - an indication that the virus is already circulating among people in that locality.
By Thursday afternoon, Brazil already had 978 confirmed cases of monkeypox, mainly in the states of São Paulo (744), Rio de Janeiro (117), Minas Gerais (44), Paraná (19), Goiás (13), Bahia (5), Ceará (4), Rio Grande do Sul (3), Rio Grande do Norte (2), Espírito Santo (2), Pernambuco (3), Tocantins (1), Mato Grosso (1), Acre (1), Santa Catarina (4), and the Federal District (15).
Caused by the hMPXV virus (Human Monkeypox Virus), monkeypox has been declared a public health emergency of international concern by the World Health Organization (WHO). The decision was made based on the increase of cases in several countries, which shoot up the risk of international spread.
Experts classify it as a rare viral disease, transmitted by close contact with an infected person with skin lesions. Contact can be through hugging, kissing, massaging, or sexual intercourse. The disease is also transmitted by respiratory secretions and by contact with objects, fabrics (clothing, bed linen, or towels), and surfaces used by the sick person.
There is no specific treatment, but the clinical pictures are usually mild, and care and observation of lesions are necessary. The greatest risk of worsening happens, in general, to immunosuppressed people with HIV/Aids, leukemia, lymphoma, metastasis, transplanted people, people with autoimmune diseases, pregnant and breastfeeding women, and children under 8 years old.
(Source: Agencia Brasil)