Two suspected cases of monkeypox have been reported in Lagos State and are currently being investigated, the Commissioner for Health, Dr Jide Idris has said.
Dr Idris told journalists at a news conference on Monday that it has become necessary to sensitise residents about the viral disease which has been reported in some states.
“Though no confirmed case has been recorded, there is the need to sensitize members of the public and provide adequate information on measures for prevention and control of the disease in line with the policy of the State Government,” he said.
While assuring residents of the state that measures have been put in place to prevent the spread of the virus, he urged residents to be vigilant and maintain “high personal and environmental hygiene”.
“I need to state that though there is no specific vaccine for the disease, vaccination against Smallpox has been proven to be 85 percent effective in preventing Monkeypox. There is also no specific anti-viral therapy for Monkeypox, however, the disease is self-limiting and could be managed conservatively,” he said.
“The preventive measures to be taken against the spread of the disease include; avoiding close contact with infected people; avoiding consumption of bushmeat and dead animals; cooking of meat and meat product thoroughly before eating and washing hands with soap and running water frequently and thoroughly.”
Monkeypox is a rare viral zoonotic disease (from animal to man) caused by Monkeypox virus which occurs primarily in Central and West Africa close to the tropical rainforest where there is frequent contact with infected animals.
The symptoms in human are similar to those seen in the past in smallpox patients although less severe.