ATLANTA — Health officials in Georgia have confirmed more cases of monkeypox.
The first case was confirmed June 6. Another two cases were confirmed this week. According to a Department of Public Health spokesperson, none of Georgia's cases are related.
The individual diagnosed with monkeypox in the second instance was described as a metro Atlanta man with a history of international travel. He is said to be isolating at home and contact tracing is underway. The third man diagnosed with the virus recently traveled to a convention in Chicago, DPH confirmed June 17. He is also isolating.
Dr. Cherie Drenzek mentioned the second case during a presentation in the state Board of Public Health meeting on June 14. She outlined the belief that the current global outbreak of monkeypox is a product of person-to-person community spread.
She called that dynamic "really unusual" for monkeypox, noting that some cases do not have a history of travel and have appeared in places where the monkeypox is not endemic.
So far, according to Drenzek's presentation last week, 1,500 cases have been identified worldwide in 33 countries without endemic monkeypox. In the U.S., 65 suspected cases in 18 states have been identified. No deaths have been reported either in the U.S. or around the world.
Symptoms of the illness include a blister rash. The CDC also lists fever, chills and fatigue as known symptoms, with people reporting muscle aches and headaches.
Those who contract the virus typically have symptoms for two to four weeks, according to the World Health Organization. Global health leaders said that severe monkeypox cases happen in children "and are related to the extent of virus exposure, patient health status, and complications."
Currently, smallpox vaccines and antiviral treatments can be used to control outbreaks. The Department of Health and Human services tells 11alive it has enough vaccines to manage the current outbreak.