JAKARTA, Indonesia — A man in Indonesia has tested positive for monkeypox, making him the country’s first confirmed case of the disease, authorities said late Saturday.
The 27-year-old man, who lives in the capital Jakarta, returned from an overseas trip on August 8, Health Ministry spokesman Mohammad Siahril told a news conference. The man started experiencing symptoms five days later and went to the doctor. He tested positive for monkeypox on Friday night and is now isolated at home, Siahril said.
“It is a self-limiting disease that will disappear after 20 days if the patient does not have any pre-existing diseases,” Siahril said, adding that the government so far sees no need to implement community-level restrictions to contain monkeypox.
Indonesia, a vast archipelago nation of more than 270 million people, has been on alert for the spread of monkeypox since the World Health Organization asked countries to increase their vigilance after The United Kingdom experienced an outbreak In May. Previously, the monkeypox virus was endemic in only a few African countries.
Monkeypox is spreading when people have close physical contact with the lesions of an infected person, their clothes or sheets. Sexual contact can increase transmission.
Most people recover from monkeypox without needing treatment, but the lesions can be extremely painful. More severe cases can lead to complications, including inflammation of the brain and death.
Worldwide, more than 31,000 cases of monkeypox have been reported in almost 90 countries. Last month, the World Health Organization declared the outbreak a global emergency.
Monkeypox is not an entirely new disease, but has been known since at least the 1970s and is a serious challenge in Africa for years.
With a limited global supply of vaccines, authorities are racing to stop the spread of the disease.
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