A recent study has alerted to an acute form of monkeypox in patients suffering from an advanced stage of HIV infection.
- Monkeypox can cause various symptoms such as fever, headache, muscle aches or swollen lymph nodes.
- Researchers have recently discovered a very serious form of monkeypox, called “Mpox fulminant”, in patients with advanced stages of HIV.
- This acute form of monkeypox is said to have caused the death of 27 HIV patients during the study.
Since May 2022, cases of monkey pox have been recorded in countries in Europe and America, regions where this pathology is not endemic. Also called Mpox, the main symptoms of this condition are fever, headache, muscle and back pain, lack of energy and swollen lymph nodes (adenopathy). “In most cases, the symptoms of monkeypox disappear on their own within a few weeks. However, in some people, the infection can lead to medical complications, and even death”warns the World Health Organization (WHO).
Mpox fulminant, an acute form of monkeypox
In a new study published in the journal The Lancetresearchers have alerted to a serious and necrotizing form of Mpox in HIV-infected patients.
To reach this finding, the scientists recruited 382 HIV patients infected with monkeypox between May 11, 2022 and January 18, 2023. When diagnosed with Mpox, 349 of the participants were living with HIV and 228 were on antiviral therapy.
In patients with advanced HIV infection, the study authors observed a very acute form of monkeypox which they named “fulminant Mpox”. The patients developed massive necroses on the skin as well as on the genitals, and in some cases, on the level of the lungs.
Monkey pox: a priority vaccination for patients with HIV
During research, this severe form of monkeypox caused the death of 27 patients. All of the deceased patients had a CD4 T lymphocyte count of less than 200 cells per mm3 of blood. It is generally from this threshold that health professionals believe that HIV has progressed to AIDS.
The researchers therefore called on the health authorities to give priority to vaccinating people affected by HIV against monkeypox in order to prevent the risk of a serious form of the disease and progression to AIDS.
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