Peruvian patient recounts his ordeal by contracting the dreaded monkeypox

Lima.- “When I started having the limb injuries (…) I was alarmed,” a peruvian patient 32-year-old who contracted the dreaded monkeypox.

I have a pre-existing illness [VIH] and had left the treatment, that has perhaps made the picture of the monkey pox has spread to me,” added this man, who asked to remain anonymous and remains isolated in the Archbishop Loayza Hospital of Lima from August 4.

Have circular lesionssome already healed, in their hands, arms, feet and to a lesser extent on the scalp and chest. Also in the genital area and in the mouth.

I never had a fever no muscle pain none of the symptoms which indicates the disease pathologythe lesions just appeared,” he says.

He says he doesn’t know how he got it, but he attributes it to his intense social activity.

“It’s for a social issue. These last two months I’ve been going out to social gatherings a lot and probably that’s where the issue of contagion has been,” he says.

It was something very surprising“, adds the patient, who had the first symptoms on August 15.

114 patients in the hospital
Since last May, countries around the world have recorded an increasing number of cases of this disease, not linked to areas of West and Central Africa, where monkeypox is endemic.

“I get a lesion on the lip, like a kind of herpes, and the following week on the genitals and the same figure on the upper and lower extremities,” says the Peruvian patient.

“They are very intense pains that come on you suddenly and it has happened to me these days that the painkiller does not calm the eight hours that it normally should, but less,” he adds.

On July 24, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the monkeypox outbreak as a public health emergency of international scope, its highest alert level. And he said the current outbreak primarily affects men who have sex with men (MSM).

“Most patients fluctuate between 20 and 54 years oldyoung people and adults and we are observing that more than 90% are men and more than 92% are MSM,” Dr. Moisés Guido Sihuancha, head of Epidemiology at Loayza Hospital, told AFP.

“We are receiving [en este hospital] almost a fifth of the cases that are reported in Lima. To date we have a total of 114 confirmed cases of which 113 are men and one woman and we are seeing an increase every day, “he adds.

most of cases are mild and the patient is cured only after two or four weeks, but there have been deaths outside of Africa.

some of the deceased suffered also orafter pathologiesincluding a 45-year-old Peruvian who had stopped his HIV/AIDS medication and died on August 1.

The disease was first identified in humans in 1970 in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and is endemic in several countries in Africa.

It is considered a rare viral disease transmitted by close contact with an infected person and skin lesions.

– ‘The most severe cases’ –
“We have seen [en el Hospital Loayza] the most severe cases. In one case, what we have managed to appreciate is a person with a very impaired immune system due to HIV infection who has not been treated or who has lost treatment for more than a year,” he told AFP. infectious disease doctor Aldo Lucchetti Rodríguez.

“If they are on their full therapy, then an infection of this type is probably not very severe and it is only an outpatient treatment like practically 95% of the patients we are seeing,” adds the head of the hospital’s isolation area.

The Peruvian Ministry of Health reported on Monday that there were 834 cases of this disease in the country, of them 666 in Lima. Of the total, 321 patients were discharge data.

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In Latin America, Peru is behind Brazilthe second country with the most cases of monkeypox, but it is the third in the world with the highest rate of infections per million inhabitants, after the United States and Canada, according to the University of Oxford.