THE PUBLIC Health Ministry said this morning (Oct. 30) mpox (monkeypox) cases increased over the past week with 24 getting injected while one patient who was HIV positive died with two having succumbed to this disease so far, TV Channel 7 said.
Dr. Thongchai Keeratihatthayakorn, acting director-general of the Disease Control Department, revealed that of the 24 new mpox patients as of Saturday Oct. 28 nine where in Bangkok, three each in Chiang Mai and Nonthaburi, two in Phuket and one each in Nakhon Pathom, Chonburi, Pathum Thani, Prachinburi, Saraburi, Udon Thani and Ubon Ratchathani
The patient who died was a 24-year-old Thai man who had been infected with HIV but had not been taking medication for three years with his CD4 count extremely low. He fell sick on Aug. 25, 2023 and was treated at a hospital for various symptoms including fever, fatigue, and rash on his face, back, hands, and genital area.
However after his condition turned more severe with dead skin found in his nose, back and fingers he was sent to Bamrasnaradura Infectious Diseases Institute for further treatment but later died from kidney and lung failure.
The cumulative total of mpox cases is 559 as well as the two deaths with both of them being immunocompromised. Of this 503 were Thais, 52 foreigners while four refused to specify their nationality.
Altogether 474 belong to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer or questioning (LGBTQ) community while 274 were HIV infected, or 44.18 percent. The majority, 241 patients, were in the 30-39 age group followed by 172 in the 20-29 age bracket.
Dr. Thongchai most common mpox symptoms include rash, fever, muscle pain, enlarged lymph nodes and itching. If the symptoms are not severe and the patient is not suffering from other diseases, treatment focuses on these symptoms.
If the patient has severe symptoms and is also suffering from other diseases such as HIV infection the antiviral drug Tecovirimat (TPOXX) is immediately given with most of them recovering but some with severe immunodeficiency have died.
Graphic images of mpox. Top photo: King’s College London, Front Page photo: Rnz.co.nz