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Monkeypox in Cameroon

05 Jun 2018

On 4 June 2018, International SOS reported at least sixteen people in Cameroon are thought to have monkeypox, a disease that hasn't been reported in the country since 1989. Monkeypox cases have been reported in Njikwa, Northwest province and Akwaya, Southwest province, Biyem-Assi, Central Region, Bertoua, Eastern Region, and Fotokol, Far-North Region.

Advice to Travellers

Monkeypox is a rare infection related to smallpox. It resembles the less severe variola minor form of smallpox and has the potential to befatal in a minority of cases. Monkeypox is unusual in travellers and tends to occur in isolated rural or forest areas.

Nearly all cases have occurred in Central or West Africa, with only a few cases ever reported outside Africa. Most infections result from direct contact with the blood, body fluids, or cutaneous/ mucosal lesions of infected animals including monkeys, giant rats, squirrels and rabbits. Rodents are the major source of infection. Eating undercooked meat of infected animals is a possible risk factor.