Health

Monkeypox Can Trigger Seizures Or Brain Inflammation

Health

(CTN News) _ Despite the small risk, monkeypox can trigger serious neurological complications, including seizures and brain inflammation, in rare cases.

This is based on 19 studies done in the U.S., Britain, and Africa.

Each investigation used data collected before the recent monkeypox outbreak started in May.

It’s not clear how past outbreak experiences apply to this one, because viral types, medical care, and patient profiles might differ.

In spite of that, earlier research shows monkeypox patients have a 2% to 3% chance of getting at least one seizure, serious brain swelling (encephalitis), and/or mental confusion.

Dr. Jonathan Rogers, a researcher of neuropsychiatric disorders at the University College London in the United Kingdom, said generally thought of as a skin disease.

He added that smallpox, a related viral infection, can cause serious neurological complications. “We wanted to find out if monkeypox was similar.”

More than 1,500 patients were included in the studies, of whom more than 1,000 were confirmed monkeypox cases.

Among  patients, depression, anxiety, fatigue, and headaches are common symptoms.

According to the study authors, not all of the studies under review included data on rarer neurological symptoms.

After pooling data, the team came up with a 2.7% seizure risk, a 2.4% confusion risk, and a 2% chance of developing disabling encephalitis.

In most cases, patients who experienced brain swelling were already seriously ill when they were hospitalized.

Rogers noted, however, that the review did not find that severe complications were limited to the most vulnerable.

Although Rogers stressed that we are still unsure of the effects of these complications, we have access to a large body of knowledge about them.

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