Monkeypox is a disease caused by infection with an orthopoxyvirus. Monkeypox virus is part of the same family of viruses as variola virus, cowpox, and other animal-related poxviruses. Monkeypox is transmitted via contact with lesions or material contaminated with the virus. Bodily fluids through close contact — including direct contact with monkeypox rash, scabs, or body fluid with someone who has monkeypox is at risk (CDC, PADOH 2022). Persons in healthcare occupations and those in contact with unwashed towels or bedding may be at risk. 

Monkeypox often begins with fever, headache, muscle aches, backache, swollen lymph nodes, and/or a general feeling of discomfort and exhaustion. Typically, within one to three days after the fever occurs, the patient develops a rash, often first on the face, but sometimes initially on other parts of the body. 

For up-to-date information on Monkeypox including U.S. maps and case counts, signs/symptoms, spread, prevention, treatment, and more, go to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website or seek other credible sources. For any questions regarding your health or the health of your family members, consult your chosen primary care provider. 

Last updated: 5/1/2023