Know the signs and symptoms of Monkeypox.

Monkeypox is rare, but it can be serious for people who get it.  The monkeypox virus is part of the same family of viruses as the variola virus, the virus that causes smallpox.  The type of monkeypox spreading in the United States is rarely deadly and has a fatality rate of less than 1%.  Typically, most cases of monkeypox will resolve on their own and the risk of monkeypox to the public is low.

Symptoms:

Anyone can get monkeypox through close contact, which includes sexual contact, with someone who has the virus.  The monkeypox virus is spreading mostly through close, intimate contact with someone who has monkeypox.  Brief interactions without physical contact are unlikely to result in transmission.

Monkeypox may begin with flu-like symptoms that can include:

  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Muscle aches
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Exhaustion

Typically, a rash or skin bumps develop 1-3 days after the onset of fever, often beginning on the face then spreading to other parts of the body, including on or near the genitals or anus.

Make sure to get checked out if you develop a new rash or bumps.  Monkeypox can look syphilis, herpes, blisters, or even acne.

Monkeypox can be spread from the time symptoms start until the rash has healed, all scabs have fallen off, and a fresh layer of skin has formed.  The illness typically lasts 2-4 weeks.

Testing:

People who are experiencing symptoms of monkeypox or think they have been exposed to monkeypox should contact a health care provider to discuss their concerns.  Students can call CSU Health Network at (970) 491-7121 if they are concerned about symptoms or exposure.  Please let staff know your specific concerns related to Monkeypox when scheduling so that they can best meet your testing needs.

Treatment:

Anyone who believes they have been in close contact with someone who has monkeypox in the last 14 days may be eligible for the vaccine.  Limited vaccine appointments are available to Coloradans who self-attest to their eligibility through the appointment request form.

Prevention:
  • Avoid close, skin-to-skin contact with people who have a rash that looks like monkeypox.
  • Avoid contact with objects and materials that a person with monkeypox has used, including bedding, towels and clothing.
  • Wash your hands often.

The CDC recommends vaccination for people who have been exposed to monkeypox as well as people who are more likely to get monkeypox.

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