Tennessee doctor weighs in on monkeypox being declared a public health emergency
Dr. William Schaffner said Tennesseans should be knowledgeable about monkeypox but not worried.
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - As President Biden declared monkeypox a public health emergency, a Tennessee doctor weighs in on the impact this might have on the volunteer state.
William Schaffner was one of the spokespersons for the Vanderbilt University Medical Center during the COVID-19 pandemic but said what’s happening with monkeypox is much different. He said that for monkeypox the spread comes from close and physical contact. Wearing a mask wouldn’t slow the spread down by much, according to Schaffner.
The VUMC doctor added that the spread has been 98% through sexual contact and has been primarily spread through men having sex with other men.
“Limit your sexual partners. Don’t do anonymous sex. Be very, very careful. This is a time to be prudent, not exuberant,” said Schaffner.
As for symptoms, Schaffner said that the blisters you can get can be painful to the point where medication is needed.
“You can start out with some viral infection type of symptoms. Fever, aches and pains, and really just not feeling well. Then it starts with the rash: first, it’s kind of flat then it turns into a real deep seeded rubbery blister,” said Schaffner.
Schaffner said that monkeypox is rarely fatal and usually cures after a week or two of symptoms. As for solutions, Schaffner said that the vaccine is a great way to help you be safe.
In Tennessee, there are at least 2,400 doses of the vaccine in the state.
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