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A disease caused by an infectious virus, monkeypox can occur in several animals, including humans. Cases may be severe, especially in children, pregnant women or people with suppressed immune systems.

Symptoms of monkeypox include fever, headache, muscle pains, swollen lymph nodes, and feeling tired. The disease also causes a rash that forms blisters. Monkeypox may be spread from handling bushmeat, an animal bite or scratch, body fluids, contaminated objects, or close contact with an infected person. Monkeypox was first identified in 1958 among laboratory monkeys in Copenhagen, and the first cases in humans were found in 1970 in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. In 2022, an outbreak led to monkeypox cases in more than 20 countries.

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