Until now, it was believed that experiencing the disease once provided lifelong immunity. Only six similar cases have been reported worldwide so far, with one in the UK, one in Switzerland, two in Italy and two more in Brazil. The country writes, however, that experts fear there may have been many more cases that went undetected. There is a risk that this will contribute to an undetected circulation of the virus and may lead to a new outbreak of the disease.
One of patients already vaccinated against monkeypox
One of the patients, a 30-year-old man in Madrid, contracted the disease for the first time in September 2022 and was diagnosed again last March. He had received a dose of the vaccine just before the first infection. The details of this case will be presented at a congress of the Spanish Society of Infectious Diseases and Clinical Microbiology.
Other patient vaccinated against smallpox as a child
The other patient, a 51-year-old man in Barcelona, had been vaccinated against smallpox as a child and was being treated by the Department of International Health and Communicable Diseases of Drassanes, attached to Vall d’Hebron Hospital in the Spanish capital. The first case was diagnosed in July and the second in November 2022.
While there is still much uncertainty surrounding monkeypox, it is important to confirm suspected reinfections through DNA sequencing. This has not been possible so far due to technical reasons or low viral load in the patients.
WHO concerned about possible resurgence of the virus
The World Health Organization (WHO) has recently expressed concern about a possible resurgence of the virus. Although the number of new cases has decreased worldwide, there is a risk that the arrival of summer festivals and events could lead to an increase in infections. Six cases of monkeypox have been diagnosed in Spain in the past three weeks.
The Ministry of Health has launched a new campaign to increase vaccination levels, particularly among groups that engage in high-risk behavior or have recently had a sexually transmitted infection. The importance of vaccination remains paramount to limit the circulation of the virus and prevent further outbreaks.
Read also: First monkeypox death reported in Spain
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