Multiple cases of monkeypox have been reported in several countries that don’t normally report monkeypox, including the United States.
- Monkeypox does not spread easily from person to person, and the virus is spreading mostly through close, intimate contact with someone who has monkeypox. While anyone can get monkeypox, the current outbreak is spreading through specific social networks, including men who have sex with men.
- See the latest number of cases in Wisconsin on the Wisconsin Department of Health Services website. For case counts nationally, see the CDC’s website .
Monkeypox is a rare disease that has been around for several decades.
- Monkeypox was first discovered in 1958 among monkeys. The first human case was recorded in 1970.
- Monkeypox and smallpox viruses are genetically similar, which means that antiviral drugs and vaccines developed to protect against smallpox may be used to prevent and treat monkeypox virus infections.
- Most people recover from monkeypox without treatment or hospitalization. There are effective treatments for people with severe monkeypox.
- The strain of the monkeypox virus that is spreading with the current outbreak is rarely deadly. Nearly everyone who gets this form of the disease will survive. However, people with weakened immune systems, children under 8 years of age, people with a history of eczema, and people who are pregnant or breastfeeding may be more likely to get very sick or die. While this strain is rarely deadly, the symptoms can be extremely painful, and people might have permanent scarring resulting from the rash.
Monkeypox and Risk
- While anyone can get monkeypox, the current outbreak is spreading through specific social networks, including men who have sex with men. If you are a man who has sex with other men, you are more likely to be exposed to monkeypox at this time.
- Monkeypox is not easily spread. Monkeypox can spread through direct skin contact with someone with a rash, contact with objects or surfaces used by someone with monkeypox, or respiratory droplets or oral fluids from someone with monkeypox. Since the monkeypox rash is very distinct, most people with monkeypox isolate soon after their symptom onset and spread it to few or no other people.
- Learn more about lowering your risk in CDC’s fact sheet, Safer Sex, Social Gatherings, and Monkeypox .
- Below is a video from CDC with ways to reduce risk:
Signs and Symptoms of Monkeypox
Symptoms of monkeypox can include:
- Muscle aches
- Swollen lymph nodes
- A rash that can look like pimples or blister that appears on the face, inside the mouth, and on other parts of the body, like the hands, feet, chest, genitals, or anus.
The monkeypox rash usually develops within one to three days after fever. However, some people may experience a rash or sores first, followed by other symptoms. Some people may also only develop a rash.
Call your doctor if you have symptoms of monkeypox.
How to Protect Yourself
Monkeypox Prevention Steps
Take the following three steps to prevent getting monkeypox:
Avoid close, skin-to-skin contact with people who have a rash that looks like monkeypox.
- Do not touch the rash or scabs of a person with monkeypox.
- Do not kiss, hug, cuddle or have sex with someone with monkeypox.
Avoid contact with objects and materials that a person with monkeypox has used.
- Do not share eating utensils or cups with a person with monkeypox.
- Do not handle or touch the bedding, towels, or clothing of a person with monkeypox.
Wash your hands often.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer, especially before eating or touching your face and after you use the bathroom.
Based on eligibility guidance from DHS, vaccination is now recommended for:
- Known contacts who are identified by public health via case investigation, contact tracing, and risk exposure assessments
- People who know that a sexual partner in the past 14 days was diagnosed with monkeypox.
- People who attended an event or venue where there was known monkeypox exposure.
- Gay men, bisexual men, trans men and women, any men who have sex with men, and gender non-conforming/non-binary individuals, who have had multiple sexual partners in the last 14 days.
- People considered to have an elevated risk of exposure to monkeypox in the future.
Booking an Appointment
- If you live in Oneida County, and believe you are eligible for a vaccine, please call us at 715-369-6111. Vaccination needs to happen within 14 days of exposure, so we will prioritize those who need a vaccine within that window as needed.
- If you leave a message after hours, please leave your phone number, and we will call back to book appointments in the order they were received.
- If you missed our return call and call us back, please be sure to say you are returning a missed call.
- Vaccine supply remains limited. We will vaccinate as many people as possible who are eligible, but we can’t guarantee everyone will be able to be seen immediately.
- You can track the number of doses statewide by visiting the Department of Health Services’ website .
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has been shipping doses of JYNNEOS vaccine using a strategy intended to help limit the spread of monkeypox in communities where transmission is highest and with populations most at risk. This means areas like Chicago get more doses than Wisconsin. HHS updates the number of vaccine doses distributed by geography each Wednesday. CDC updates the number of cases by state each weekday.
- There are two vaccines approved for monkeypox, JYNNEOS and ACAM2000. JYNNEOS is the preferred vaccine for nearly everyone. You can read more about the differences in the vaccines on the CDC website.
- JYNNEOS contains a live virus that does not replicate efficiently in human cells.
- The JYNNEOS vaccine is a two-dose series given at least 28 days apart. People are fully vaccinated about 2 weeks after their second shot of JYNNEOS.
- Even once vaccinated, people should protect themselves from infection by avoiding close, skin-to-skin contact, including intimate contact, with someone who has monkeypox.
- In the US, there is currently a limited supply of JYNNEOS, although more is expected in the coming weeks and months.
Monkeypox and Pets
It’s possible that people who are infected can spread the monkeypox virus to animals through close contact, including petting, cuddling, hugging, kissing, licking, sharing sleeping areas, and sharing food. People with monkeypox should avoid contact with animals. See the CDC website for more information on preventing spread to pets.
Materials & Resources to Learn More
New and Updated:
Monkeypox in Animals UPDATED