Monkeypox – Spain

From July 6 to 19, 2022, a total of 21 persons were infected by monkeypox (recently renamed mpox) virus (MPXV) that was likely to have been transmitted by means of piercing or tattooing at the same parlor in Cadiz, Spain.

During this period, 21 of 58 customers (36%) at the tattoo parlor became infected.

Of the 21 infected patients, 14 (67%) were female and 9 (43%) were younger than 18 years of age. The median age of the patients was 26 years (interquartile range, 16 to 38). The patients had no history of recent high-risk sexual activity (e.g., sex without a barrier method of contraception or with multiple partners), travel to areas where mpox is endemic, or close contact with MPXV-infected persons.

Photo: Smallpox virus, a close relative of Monkeypox – Electron micrograph.

Monkeypox is a rare viral disease that mostly occurs in Central and West Africa. The disease is similar to smallpox and involves blistered skin but it is often milder. Humans can be infected by an animal via a bite, or by direct contact with an infected animal’s bodily fluids. The virus can also spread from human to human, by respiratory (airborne) contact or by contact with an infected person’s bodily fluids.

The smallpox vaccine can protect against monkeypox.

The virus was first identified in 1958 among laboratory monkeys. The first cases in humans were found in 1970 in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

<<< Back to alert index

Follow us

While you are here, help us with

Access to Essential Drugs

One third of children, women and men have no access to essential medicines, putting lives at risk. Hospitals frequently run out of medicines and other essential supplies. Our Med-Aid program connects hospitals with aid and ensures that they receive exactly what they need.

Access to Diagnostics

Much of today’s innovation is either not reaching or not suitable for people in developing countries.

Data to Improve Health

Faster and reactive systems to help provide lifesaving support to vulnerable communities.

Support our work. It only takes a minute but makes a world of difference!

With your help we can bring modern diagnostics and essential medicines to people in need, track disease outbreaks better and help prevent future pandemics.