by Mila McManus, MD
Whether it’s Monkeypox, COVID, or flu and cold season, it is always a good reminder to our patients and friends that we should always be engaged in ensuring our immune function is operating optimally.
What is Monkeypox and what do we know about it?
- Unlike COVID, Monkeypox has been well studied and occurred in America in 2003 and is endemic to Western and Central Africa. While the CDC believes we will see more cases popping up in the United States in the coming days and weeks, it is not novel, and there are antiviral treatments for it.
- This virus is a rare disease closely related to smallpox, and according to the CDC, the small pox vaccine is 85% protective against it. Positive testing for Orthopox, the family of viruses that includes Monekypox and smallpox, is used for diagnosis. Monkeypox is unrelated to Chickenpox.
- Monkeypox is also not as easily transmitted as COVID, colds, and flu. It is largely transmitted through close, skin-to-skin contact, and is transferred by body fluids, virus sores, and respiratory droplets of people with lesions in their mouths and throats due to infection. Shared bedding and clothing with intimate partners is a possible method of transmission. Most recent cases around the world have been identified within the gay and bisexual communities.
- There are two strains. One out of Central Africa and another out of West Africa that is less severe. So far, the several confirmed cases in the US have been the less severe strain. Also, the positive diagnoses have been found in individuals who are recently returned from international travel. A pandemic is highly unlikely.
- Traditional primary care physicians are the best source for diagnosis and treatment.
What are the symptoms for Monkeypox?
- Starts with flu-like symptoms, including fever, chills, headache, and achy muscles.
- Swollen lymph nodes are also common.
- After 1-3 days, a rash usually develops on the face, then can spread to the rest of the body.
- Flat, circular lesions in different parts of the body that eventually turn into bumps filled with a clear fluid develop.
- These bumps eventually become crusty and fall off.
- Recovery usually takes 2 to 4 weeks.
Helpful Immune Boosters to Fight off Viral Infections
- Vitamin D3
- Quality Probiotic
- Vitamin C
- Tri-Immune Injections with Glutathione, Zinc, and Vitamin C
- Zinc 25-50mg daily
Finally, a healthy lifestyle including quality rest, stress reduction practices, exercise, avoiding sugar, handwashing, sunshine, and laughter are invaluable ways to support immune function.
For preventative support, we are happy to assist you in putting together an individual protection plan. Schedule an appointment with one of our medical providers to discuss the ideal plan for you.