The viral disease monkeypox has been deemed a public health emergency by both the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the World Health Organization. The disease is a caused by the monkeypox virus, which is related to both smallpox and cowpox.
The first case of monkeypox in Cuyahoga County was diagnosed in July 2022. As of August 11, 2022, there were 18 reported cases in Cuyahoga County and a total of 75 cases reported in all of Ohio.
Cleveland State University is continuing to monitor monkeypox to protect the health and wellbeing of the campus community.
We encourage you to learn more about the symptoms of this disease, how it spreads and what to do if you or someone close to you is exposed to monkeypox.
People with monkeypox may experience flu-like symptoms—including fever, headache, fatigue, body aches and swelling of the lymph nodes. Other symptoms may be present.
The infection often comes with a rash and/or skin lesions on the body and face, though it can present in any localized area (hands, face, mouth, genitals).
Symptoms generally present within 1-2 weeks of exposure to the virus, though some may not exhibit symptoms until 3 weeks. The virus typically resolves itself within 2-4 weeks.
How It Spreads
The spread of monkeypox happens primarily through close contact between people, including through sexual relations and skin-to-skin contact. It also can be spread by respiratory droplets exchanged in face-to-face contact, including kissing. The virus also spreads through indirect contact (including towels and toiletries) that have been used by an infected person.
If You Have Symptoms
If you don’t feel well, stay home.
If you are experiencing skin lesions, a rash or any of the other related symptoms above, contact your primary health care provider to verify that your symptoms are consistent with a monkeypox infection and if testing is necessary.
Until you have been checked out by a health-care provider, wear gloves and a mask and avoid close contact with anyone, including sex or other intimate forms of contact.
If you test positive for monkeypox, local public health officials will be in touch to advise you about the appropriate next steps, safety protocols and isolation.
If You Have Been Exposed
If you don’t feel well, stay home. If you have had close contact with someone infected with monkeypox, contact your primary health care provider or local public health agency for evaluation.
If you are identified through contact tracing as having been exposed, local public health officials will be in touch to advise you about the appropriate next steps.
If you have been exposed, wear gloves and a mask around others and any of the avoid close contact described above. Contact your health care provider and schedule a visit to rule out possible infection.
For More Information
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers a comprehensive website with additional information and updates on monkeypox.