A man died of a mysterious virus called “Alaskapox” in late January 2024, after a strange rash appeared on his skin.
For the first time in the world, a person has died End of January 2024 of the virus AlaskapoxA mysterious virus responsible for Skin lesions and typical symptoms of smallpox, reports the Alaska Department of Health. This “old” man lived and cared for a forested area on the Kenai Peninsula (Alaska). stray cat Near their habitats who regularly hunted small mammals and who scratched them many times. It was immunity And treated cancer. virus Alaskapox (or “Alaskan smallpox” in French). Orthopox virus strain, the family of viruses that includes smallpox, including monkeypox. This virus usually infects Small mammals Like the hollow and the red-backed shrew. “Infection is rare ; (We should) be aware of the symptoms but Don’t worry“, reassures Dr. Julia Rogers, an epidemiologist at the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Alaska.
Cases in France?
No, the virus has only been found in the United States at the moment and cases are pending Exceptional. It is detected First time in a woman in Fairbanks, in AlaskaIn 2015. Between 2020 and 2023, Six additional cases Alaskapox virus infections have been reported in Alaska. Except for a fatal case in January 2024, almost all patients presented with benign ailments that resolved after a few weeks without treatment.
What are the symptoms?
- The sudden appearance of one or more skin lesions that take the form of Red bumps, pustules or papules, with uThere is no induration (callus) in the center. The lesions have an “unusual” appearance and are reminiscent of “insect or spider bites” that may itch.
- Swelling of lymph nodes (in the armpit, neck, groin, etc.), especially those located near the lesion.
- the pain joint and/or muscular
- Significant fatigue
Photos of Alaskapox lesions
Because there are very few cases,”We don’t know exactly How the virus spreads from animals to humans is unclear, but contact with small mammals and potentially domestic animals exposed to small wild mammals may play a role.“, Alaska Department of Health scientists report. To date, There is no human-to-human transmission Alaskapox virus has not been documented.
What to do if you think you have Alaskapox?
► Talk to a doctor who will take a picture of the lesion and send it to the epidemiology service.
► Keep the affected area covereda bandage
► Do not touch the lesions or scratch them.
► Avoid sharing bedding or other linens who came into contact with the lesion.
► Avoid touching small mammals such as squirrels (eg predators).
► Do not touch dead animals in your garden