Dermatologists report a surge in the number of people turning up to check for monkeypox; these are mostly minor skin ailments due to weather, they say
With eight cases of monkeypox detected so far in India, including three positive cases in Delhi and five in Kerala, people in the city with skin rashes are now getting themselves checked.
Since monkeypox is characterised by unexplained rash and skin lesions along with fever, body aches, headaches, swollen lymph nodes, many people have started to panic over the disease.
Dr Bhavyashree, Dermatologist Trilife Hospital, Bengaluru, said, “There has been a steady increase in number of patients visiting the hospital with skin ailments.
Many of these patients have minor skin aliments such as allergic rashes , rashes associated with viral aliments or chickenpox.”
She added that such skin rashes were common during the monsoon, and there is an increased number of patients with viral infections and chickenpox, where skin rashes and fever are common symptoms. There have been a lot of parents bringing their kids in for consultation as well. “However, many a times it is Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease (HFMD) that is common in children till 12 years of age.”
Dr Mikki, Head Dermatologist and Cosmetologist Bodycraft Clinic , also agreed that more and more people were turning up out of paranoia. She pointed out that if in case one is diagnosed with this disease, there are many treatments one can use to rejuvenate their skin.
For mild cases, people could use natural treatments like Vitamin E, calamine lotion, aloe vera, cocoa butter and rosehip oil. It’s important to also consult a healthcare professional. For over-the-counter alternatives for scars, one can use retinol creams, exfoliants and scar removal creams, she explained.
“But for more severe cases one will have to get professional help and treatments. A few steps people can take to prevent monkeypox is to avoid contact with sick animals, thoroughly cook all food that contains meat, wash hands frequently, wear a mask in public and disinfect all surfaces,” said Dr Mikki.
While fever and rashes are symptoms of monkeypox, the condition starts with fever, headache and in certain cases sore throat and cough, coupled with swollen lymph nodes.
“Most cases of monkeypox can be treated at home with paracetamol for fever and pain and self-isolation. Patients need to drink adequate water and topical ointments can be applied to soothe skin rashes and itching,” added Dr Bhavyashree.
Karnataka government designates hospitals for monkeypox
At a high-level meeting chaired by CM Basavaraj Bommai on monkeypox, health minister Dr K Sudhakar announced that Epidemic Diseases Hospital in Bengaluru and Wenlock Hospital in Mangaluru have been identified as designated hospitals for isolation of suspected cases. “No cases have been reported in Karnataka so far. There were three suspects out of which, two in Bengaluru have turned out negative and another suspect, a Belgium national, found in Uttara Kannada district, has been tested and his report is not yet out. Confirmed cases will be isolated and treated for 21 days until the rashes are cured,” he said.