Lorient - Two cases of monkeypox in Lorient and about fifteen vaccinations

Lorient – Two cases of monkeypox in Lorient and about fifteen vaccinations

What is monkeypox, also called monkey pox?

Aurélien Lorléac’h, infectious disease doctor at the Bretagne Sud Hospital Group: It is a viral infection of the smallpox family, which we only know about historically and somewhat mythically because it is the only disease that humans succeeded in eradicating it, thanks to vaccination. Monkeypox continued to circulate in sub-Saharan Africa without being a major public health problem, like malaria, either for the local population or among travellers.

What are the symptoms ?

Classically, it starts with a big flu-like illness, fatigue, fever, people also describe a mini-angina, pain when swallowing and, a few days later, skin lesions sometimes with a localization at the level of the ano-genital sphere which can lead to significant anal pain. We know that it is a benign pathology, that there are almost no hospitalizations. Deaths have been announced in the general press but there are no scientific publications yet, these are probably people who were in a major state of immunosuppression before. You are said to be contagious until the scabs fall off, which usually occurs 21 days after the onset of symptoms.

These are over 98% of men who have sex with men and multipartners

Is there a typical patient profile?

What was surprising was that the cases reported as early as May-June were not people who had traveled to countries where this virus is circulating. Currently, this is over 98% of men who have sex with men (MSM) with multiple partners. Is it sexually transmitted like HIV, chlamydia? One wonders if it is not rather a cutaneous or cutaneous-mucous transmission with close contact. Respiratory transmission, if it exists, is not in the foreground otherwise it would have already spread to other groups.

Have cases been identified in Lorient?

There were four cases in Morbihan, two treated in Vannes and two in Lorient, but there may also be minimal forms that are not diagnosed. To test, it is the same technique as covid screening: a swab is taken from a skin lesion. The swab is sent to the virology laboratory of the Rennes University Hospital. We usually have the result in less than 48 hours.

Can we fear a pandemic of the magnitude of covid-19?

At present, this is confined to a single specific epidemiological group so there is less fear of dissemination to other groups. That said, many infectiologists, including me, thought that the coronavirus would stay in China… Personally, I trust the WHO: they raised the alert threshold to the maximum, which means that we have to be vigilant and attentive.

Limit, during the time the virus circulates, the number of partners and “sex parties”

Lorient has a vaccination centre, how is it organised?

The ARS changed its protocol in mid-July, targeting MSM with multipartners and sex workers for vaccination. Lorient was not identified for the start, but there was demand so we organized ourselves to be able to offer it. We have already carried out fifteen vaccinations since last week. There are two doses at least 28 days apart.

Apart from the vaccine, how can we protect ourselves against monkey pox?

The best way to limit the risk immediately and much more quickly than vaccination, which will take several weeks, months to have an impact on the epidemic, is to try to limit, during the time the virus circulates, the number of partners and “sex parties”. As for the condom, it probably provides protection and reduces the risk of monkeypox infection, but not 100%, far from it.


Information on vaccination in Lorient at Cegidd (Free information, screening and diagnosis centre), 11, quai de Rohan. Such. 02 97 06 76 20.

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