This monkeypox that looks so much like a sexually transmitted infection

Fabien then tried the other vaccination site, at the Haut-Lévêque hospital (CHU), on Friday July 29. Bingo. Appointment slots are open. “I registered to be vaccinated there, this Wednesday, August 3. On site, I waited with a dozen people for about half an hour, I had to fill out a form in which I must indicate if I am a case-contact and if I am an MSM [homme ayant des relations sexuelles avec des hommes, NDLR]. Vaccinators at the hospital say they started the campaign with 20 doses a day, before switching to 60 daily, and soon they hope to go up to 100.

The risk of dating apps

Here is Samir. He too is gay. Follower of dating apps, he multiplies the partners. “Rumors are circulating and the concern is legitimate in the community,” he admits. Nothing to do with the psychosis of HIV, since we know that this virus is not fatal. On the other hand, the symptoms are very painful and force a three-week isolation. I decided to get vaccinated this week. The first time slot that was offered to me is in two weeks. I took. Gays are targeted, it’s true, but with the apps, I happen to meet men who have sex with men and who are married to women…”

At the Bordeaux University Hospital, Professor Charles Cazanave takes into account the stigmatizing nature of monkeypox. Health authorities are somewhat reluctant to describe the profiles of infected people. “It’s a double-edged sword, because the populations most at risk must be well informed, admits Professor Cazanave. Objectively, we see that the majority of contaminations concern men having sexual activity with several partners. Very few women are affected. And overall, the virus is transmitted during sexual relations, in prolonged contact from infected skin to skin, from infected mucous membrane to mucous membrane, just like chicken pox. Officially, monkeypox is not an STD, because the virus is not located in the sexual organs, but it is contracted as an STD, so in fact, it is still a sexually transmitted infection. »

Don’t let your guard down

Doctor Pierre Parneix, doctor of public health, hospital hygiene at the CHU of Bordeaux and responsible for the network for the prevention of infections associated with care for New Aquitaine, holds a similar speech. “Monkeypox has joined the ranks of sexually transmitted infections, because the virus has been identified in seminal fluid, and transmission is mainly by contact with lesions and especially during sexual intercourse. We must not let our guard down and act accordingly. »

According to Professor Cazanave, vaccination will not be extended to the entire population, except in the event that the epidemic spreads faster than expected. “In the immediate future, the vaccine concerns contact cases, MSM, sex workers, he adds. To prevent the infection from gaining ground, these publics must protect themselves, be well informed and vaccinate themselves as quickly as possible. We have entered an epidemic phase, with figures rising day by day, and those announced by Public Health France are surely below reality. Fortunately, the disease is not very anxiety-provoking, it rarely leads to hospitalizations, and even more rarely deaths. Rare cases of death are mostly related to previous comorbidities. On the other hand, monkeypox forces long-term social exclusion. »

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