Global Monkeypox Soar: Is It Airborne? Can Pregnant Women Pass It To Unborn Fetuses?

Global monkeypox cases will hit the 800 mark and more than 30 countries have reported cases, with the UK detecting more than 300 cases. The UK Health Security Agency said monkeypox would be classified as a notifiable infectious disease from this week.

“Rapid diagnosis and reporting is key to interrupting transmission and containing further spread of monkeypox. This new legislation will support us and our health partners to rapidly identify, treat and control the disease,” Wendi Shepherd, monkeypox director of incidents at UKHSA told the British Medicine Journal.

Can Monkeypox be in the air?

A New York Times report citing experts pointed out that monkeypox disease can also be transmitted through the air — like Covid-19.

Experts speaking to the NYT said a 2017 monkeypox outbreak in a Nigerian prison infected inmates and health workers who had no contact with the person suffering from the disease.

The problem came to the fore when the US Centers Of Disease Control made a U-turn regarding wearing masks to prevent the possibility of monkey pox.

It initially advised wearing masks and then removed them – similar to what it did during the early stages of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Epidemiologist and health economist Eric Feigl-Ding said such reports “create confusion” and “lead to hesitation.”

The report also said that monkeypox virus can sometimes be transmitted through aerosols such as SARS-Cov-2.

Can women pass on Monkeypox to their fetuses?

In Congo, large-scale research has been carried out to determine whether a pregnant woman can pass on the monkeypox virus to her fetus.

At least 216 women were studied and it was found that 4 out of 5 pregnant women who suffered from monkey pox also miscarried.

Traces of the virus and viral lesions were found in the fetuses.

Myths and False Claims – Debunked

Several social media users around the world have received a fake message stating that monkeypox is a side effect of the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine.

The claim stems from the fact that AstraZeneca’s shot uses a chimpanzee adenovirus vector.

Experts who spoke to the AFP said the claim is unfounded, as both viruses — monkeypox pox virus and adenovirus for the Covid vaccine — belong to different families.

Professor Eom Jung-shik, an infectious disease expert at Gachon University Gil Medical Center, said vaccines cannot generate new viruses in humans and cause monkeypox.

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