First human death from Alaskapox reported

First human death from Alaskapox reported
16 feb 2024 · 1 min. 17 sec.

A mysterious new relative of the dreaded smallpox virus has emerged in the far northern state of Alaska. State health officials are calling it Alaskapox. While not as deadly as...

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A mysterious new relative of the dreaded smallpox virus has emerged in the far northern state of Alaska. State health officials are calling it Alaskapox. While not as deadly as its cousin smallpox, eliminated worldwide thanks to vaccines, Alaskapox appears capable of infecting both animals and humans.
First discovered in 2015, Alaskapox causes skin lesions and flu-like symptoms. So far it has infected seven Alaskans, all of whom recovered after a few weeks. But tragically, an elderly cancer patient is the first known death from the new virus.
Living in a remote forest area, the man was repeatedly scratched by a stray cat hunting small mammals. One scratch was located right where a strange skin sore later developed under his arm. Within months, the suppressed immune system of the cancer patient proved unable to fight off the Alaskapox infection.
State epidemiologists believe the virus spreads through animal contact, possibly from common northern species like voles and shrews. While no cases of person-to-person transmission are confirmed yet, caution prevails. Alaskans are advised to promptly bandage any unusual skin lesions and call their doctor, especially if also feeling fatigued or feverish after contact with stray pets or wild animals. We will keep monitoring this frontier outbreak.
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Autore Quiet.Please
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