Human Monkeypox: Epidemiologic and Clinical Characteristics, Diagnosis, and Prevention

Infect Dis Clin North Am. 2019 Dec;33(4):1027-1043. doi: 10.1016/j.idc.2019.03.001. Epub 2019 Apr 11.


Recently, concern has been raised about the emergence of human monkeypox virus and the occasionally severe clinical presentation bearing resemblance to that of smallpox. In 2018 3 patients in the UK were diagnosed with monkeypox, and the frequency and geographic distribution of cases across West and Central Africa have increased in recent years. In Nigeria, most monkeypox patients are aged <40 years and lack cross-protective immunity because they were born after discontinuation of the smallpox eradication campaign. This article reviews the epidemiology, clinical features, and management of monkeypox and discusses its growing public health threat in this context.

Keywords: Epidemic; Monkeypox; Smallpox; West Africa.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Africa / epidemiology
  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Monkeypox virus / physiology*
  • Mpox (monkeypox) / epidemiology*
  • Mpox (monkeypox) / pathology
  • Mpox (monkeypox) / virology*
  • Risk Factors
  • Zoonoses