First monkeypox case detected in Kern County

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BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — Public Health officials said the first probable case of monkeypox has been detected in a Kern County resident, according to a release Saturday.

Kern Public Health officials did not release details on how the person may have contracted the disease but are looking into possible exposures. The patient is in isolation and recovering at home, officials said.

“We are actively investigating the circumstances surrounding this case, identifying close contacts and notifying them of their potential exposure,” Kern County Public Health Director Brynn Carrigan said in a release.

As of July 8, the CDC has reported 791 monkeypox cases in 37 states, Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico. There have been 141 reported cases of monkeypox in California.

Officials said while contracting monkeypox is rare and can be painful, no deaths have been reported in the U.S.

Monkeypox is a disease that can spread from humans, animals and materials contaminated with the virus and primarily spreads through direct contact with infectious sores, scabs, body fluids, or infected materials. Officials state the disease can also be spread through “respiratory secretions during prolonged, close, face-to-face or intimate contact.”

Symptoms of monkeypox rash, swollen lymph nodes, body aches or fatigue. KCPH said while there are no specific treatments for monkeypox, a smallpox vaccination may be recommended for people who have been exposed to monkeypox.

Anyone who feels they may have been exposed to monkeypox or has symptoms of monkeypox should contact their healthcare provider as soon as possible.

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