First two monkeypox patients recover from disease: health ministry

Two new suspected cases of monkeypox detected in Lahore's General Hospital

M. Waqar Bhatti
Ummay Farwa
Test tube labelled Monkeypox virus positive are seen in this illustration taken May 22, 2022. — Reuters
Test tube labelled "Monkeypox virus positive" are seen in this illustration taken May 22, 2022. — Reuters

  • One of the patients has been discharged: officials. 
  • People mistaking chickenpox as mpox: experts.
  • Experts urge ministry to take note of increasing cases of smallpox. 

ISLAMABAD: The first two monkeypox cases reported in Pakistan last week have recovered from the virus, officials of the Federal Ministry of Health said Sunday. 

The person deported from Saudi Arabia, who was under treatment at the Pakistan Institute Of Medical Sciences (PIMS) Hospital, has been discharged, said the ministry's officials.

Meanwhile, the other person was in quarantine at their home and was said to be in a stable condition. 

According to infectious disease experts, many cases of "chickenpox" are being reported in Pakistan. They said that people are mistaking the cases of chickenpox as monkeypox

The experts urged the health ministry to take note of the increasing cases of smallpox.

Meanwhile, two new suspected cases of mpox have been detected in Lahore's General Hospital (GH), said the administration on Sunday.

The hospital administration said that the suspected patients are hospitalised for the last two days and are under treatment. 

As per the details, one of the new suspected patients is a female and the other is a male, who were showing symptoms of the disease. Their symptoms include fever and red spots while one of them also has blisters on the body.

There are no further details as to where the patients contracted the virus or whether they were travellers.

WHO assures assistance to contain monkeypox in Pakistan

On Saturday, World Health Organisation (WHO) Saturday assured to assist Pakistan as per its requirement to contain the monkeypox virus, after the authorities reportedly decided to approach the body for vaccines.

In a statement, the organisation said it had been working and probing the spread of the virus alongside Pakistan's government, as the situation continues to evolve.

An official of the Ministry of National Health Services stated that no evidence of localised transmission of monkeypox in Pakistan had been found so far, while the risk of its international spread from the country remains low.

WHO also did not recommend any restrictions on trade on the currently available information regarding monkeypox outbreaks.

What is Monkeypox?

Mpox is a viral illness caused by the monkeypox virus, a species of the genus Orthopoxvirus. Two different clades exist — clade I and clade II.

The WHO has said that the common symptoms of monkeypox or mpox are a skin rash or mucosal lesions which can last 2–4 weeks and are accompanied by fever, headache, muscle aches, back pain, low energy, and swollen lymph nodes.

Mpox can be transmitted to humans through physical contact with someone who is infectious, with contaminated materials, or with infected animals.