Montreal’s prime public well being official is urging folks to not panic as her division investigates 17 instances of suspected monkeypox within the better Montreal area.
At a information convention Thursday morning, Dr. Mylène Drouin mentioned there are 15 suspected instances on the island of Montreal, one on the South Shore and one other north of Laval.
“Most of our instances will not be extreme,” mentioned Drouin, including officers are nonetheless awaiting lab outcomes to verify whether or not they’re, in reality, monkeypox.
Till now, monkeypox outbreaks have been restricted largely to central and western Africa, however in latest weeks, suspected instances have been recognized within the U.S., U.Okay., Portugal and Spain.
Drouin mentioned the primary instances in Montreal have been reported on Might 12 by clinics specializing in sexually transmitted illnesses. She mentioned these instances are tied largely to males aged 30 to 55 who’ve had sexual relations with different males.
The virus isn’t a sexually transmitted an infection, Drouin mentioned, however one that’s “primarily transmitted by shut contact and [respiratory] droplets.”
“It is not one thing that you may purchase once you [do your groceries] or on public transportation,” she mentioned.
The virus is thought to unfold by way of a wide range of methods — together with respiratory droplets, open sores, contact with bodily fluids, or by touching contaminated garments or bedding.
Likened to a milder type of smallpox, monkeypox is a uncommon viral sickness that usually begins with signs similar to fever, headache, backache and fatigue — much like signs of COVID-19 or the flu. However docs say essentially the most noticeable symptom is a rash or lesions on the pores and skin.
Montreal public well being officers do not imagine the virus will flow into in the neighborhood as it isn’t extremely infectious, Drouin mentioned.
She mentioned all folks with suspected instances are in isolation and have been requested to cowl their pores and skin lesions with bandages.
Drouin described “important contact instances” as “these in the identical family and sexual companions.” She urged anybody with signs to seek the advice of a physician.
The information convention got here after Quebec’s Well being Ministry mentioned in a press release late Wednesday it had been notified of an individual with a confirmed case of monkeypox who travelled to the province.
In the meantime, the Massachusetts Division of Public Well being confirmed a single case of monkeypox on Wednesday in a person who had just lately travelled to Canada. It didn’t specify to which province the person had travelled.