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Monkeypox Symptoms Usually Appear Like This, According to an Infectious Disease Expert

What to know about monkeypox.

The World Health Organization declared the rapidly spreading monkeypox outbreak a global health emergency. The declaration is WHO's the highest level of alert and a sign that monkeypox is a significant threat to global health and that a coordinated international response is needed.

As an immunologist and allergist at NYU Langone and an Assistant professor of medicine in the division of infectious disease and immunology, I observe a rise in cases globally and want to make sure that everyone is aware of the symptoms and risks. It's important to know when you should seek treatment or know when you have been exposed to obtain a vaccine. 

What are the symptoms of monkeypox?

The first symptom feels like a flu-like illness — fatigue, cough, fever, and cough. You can also have swelling of lymph nodes. 

The characteristic "pox" rash which are fluid-filled vesicles that look like small round blisters and can be on the face, genitalia, or skin anywhere on the body. 

If you have been exposed, get a vaccine immediately through the department of health: if you have the symptoms, please notify your close contacts you may have been exposed especially sexual partners.

RELATED: Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.

How can someone stay safe from monkeypox?

It appears sexual contact is the most common form of transmission right now, although it is possible through close contact with droplets too. Use protection with sexual partners and continue to mask indoors.

These factors put people in danger of getting monkeypox:

  • Multiple sexual partners 
  • Immunocompromised individuals 
  • Travel to endemic areas of the world that have high rates of monkeypox (although most of the recent contact has not been linked to monkeypox). And to protect your life and the lives of others, don't visit any of these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.

Purvi Parikh, MD Infectious Disease Allergy and Immunology, Pediatric Allergy & Immunology with NYU Langone Health