Monkeypox: Cases related to the Darklands Festival, adult sauna

Outbreaks of monkeypox have been linked to an adult sauna and fetish festival, as some cases of the virus are found to be likely sexually transmitted.

A “sexual form of monkeypox” has been blamed for the global spread of the virus, with outbreaks now linked to an adult sauna and fetish festival.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has suggested that human-to-human transmission is occurring between people who are in “close physical contact” with symptomatic cases, with officials also investigating a number of cases that have been linked. to the gay community.

“Based on the information currently available, cases have been identified primarily, but not exclusively, among men having sex with men (MSM) seeking primary care and sexual health clinics,” the WHO said.

An adult sauna in Spain has been linked to many of the monkeypox cases that have emerged in the city of Madrid.

The Paraiso sauna, a gay-friendly facility in the heart of the city, revealed on Twitter that it would be temporarily closed.

“The Paraiso sauna will remain closed for the next few days, a precautionary measure in the face of the alert … for the emergence of so-called monkeypox infections in the Madrid region,” he said.

Enrique Ruiz Escudero, a health official from the Madrid region, told reporters that authorities have registered 21 confirmed cases and 19 suspected cases.

“Most of the people who have tested positive have a link to this source,” he said, referring to the sauna.

“The Department of Public Health will carry out an even more detailed analysis … to control the infection, cut the chains of transmission and try to mitigate the transmission of this virus as much as possible.”

Three confirmed cases in Belgium have also been linked to a large-scale fetish festival in the city of Antwerp.

Darklands Festival is a four-day event that encourages visitors to “explore their sexuality and develop a healthy and safe interest in our community’s many fetishes.”

“The various tribes of the gay fetish community (leather, rubber, army, skinhead, cubs …) come together to create a unique fetish brotherhood show,” the website states.

Event organizers recently issued a notice to attendees that the three officially identified monkeypox cases in Belgium have been linked to festival visitors.

“There is reason to assume that the virus was brought to the festival by visitors from abroad after recent cases in other countries,” the organizers said in a statement.

“The federal government risk assessment team asked Darklands to inform its host about these infections.”

As of Saturday, there have been 92 laboratory confirmed cases of the virus globally, along with 28 suspected cases.

These numbers continue to grow, with cases already confirmed in 12 countries, including two in Australia.

Chickenpox is usually not fatal, but it often manifests itself through fever, body aches, swollen lymph nodes, chills, exhaustion, and a chickenpox-like rash on the hands and face.

The virus, which is endemic to parts of Africa, can be transmitted through contact with skin lesions or droplets of body fluid from an infected person.

However, WHO official David Heymann said what appears to be happening now is that the virus is sexually transmitted, causing new outbreaks globally.

“What appears to be happening now is that it has entered the population as a sexual form, as a genital form, and is spreading along with sexually transmitted infections, which has amplified its transmission around the world,” said the infectious disease specialist. Reuters.

one of The cases in Australia were detected in a man in his forties who recently returned to Sydney from Europe.

He went to his family doctor several days after returning to Australia, with the doctor determining his symptoms were compatible with monkeypox, resulting in urgent testing.

The other case is a man in his thirties who developed mild symptoms before returning to Melbourne from London on May 16.

Remains in isolation at Alfred Hospital with mild symptoms.

There is no specific treatment, but smallpox vaccination has been found to be approximately 85% effective in preventing monkeypox.

Symptoms usually last two to four weeks.

NSW medical director Dr. Kerry Chant said the virus shouldn’t be a cause for panic.

“Usually, you need to have pretty prolonged face-to-face contact,” said Dr. Chant.

“It’s not the same spreading mechanism as Covid or influenza, where it is [transmission] it is more fleeting ».

However, he urged people to pay attention to symptoms and seek medical help if symptoms emerge.

“It starts with fever, body aches and pains. You can get them in large lymph nodes, headache, feel tired and lethargic, “said Dr. Chant.

“And then it can be followed by a rash for one to three more days. Often the rash starts on the face. “

– with AFP

Originally published as Monkeypox cases related to adult sauna, fetish festival

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