Monkeypox was first discovered in 1958 when two outbreaks of a smallpox disease occurred in colonies of monkeys bred for research, hence the name “monkeypox”. The incubation period (interval from infection to onset of symptoms) for monkeypox is usually 6 to 13 days, but can range from 5 to 21 days. Monkeypox is nothing new and the virus is endemic in several countries. But when cases began to appear beyond the expected places and among people who did not travel to those endemic regions, researchers paid attention.
The virus can be transmitted by contact with an infected person or animal or through contaminated surfaces. Usually, the virus enters the body through broken skin, inhalation, or mucous membranes of the eyes, nose or mouth. Researchers believe that person-to-person transmission occurs mainly through inhalation of large respiratory droplets rather than direct contact with body fluids or indirect contact through clothing. Human-to-human transmission rates of monkeypox have been limited.
Monkeypox is a rare disease caused by the monkeypox virus, which is part of the same family as smallpox, although it is generally less severe.