UPDATE: A day after notifying the public that an out-of-state visitor in Dallas for the Daddyland Festival circuit parties over the July 4th weekend, Dallas County Health and Human Services announced that another man, visiting from out of state June 22-25, has also been diagnosed with monkeypox. The individual told HHS officials that he had been to Club Dallas while he was in town and while he was infectious, and that he had multiple sexual encounters at the Club Dallas sauna during that time.
“Persons who visited Club Dallas during these dates are advised to monitor themselves for possible monkeypox signs and seek medical attention if they develop symptoms of monkeypox,” an HHS press release noted.
ORIGINAL POST: Dallas County Health and Human Services announced today (Wednesday, July 6) that “an out-of-state visitor who was in town for the Daddyland Festival” held in Dallas over the July 4th weekend has been confirmed to have monkeypox. The individual, who went to an area hospital with a rash, was diagnosed through laboratory testing.
According to a HHS press release, “Given the size of the Daddyland Festival, others who attended the events could have been exposed to monkeypox and. possibly, infected.”
The press release continued, “The individual reported attendance at Daddyland Festival events and private parties while infectious,” which raises “a concern for local, community transmission for anyone who attended these events and participated in activities that pose a high risk for monkeypox transmission.”
HHS officials noted that in all four reported cases of monkeypox among Dallas County residents, those diagnosed with the infection “self-identified as men who have sex with other men and reported a history of international travel.”
But they stressed that anyone, regardless of sexual orientation, can spread the infection through contact with bodily fluids, monkeypox sores or shared items such as clothing or bedding. The virus can also spread through respiratory droplets.
The HHS press release concludes: “Nationally, many monkeypox cases are occurring within sexual networks. People who attended the Daddyland Festival parties — including men who have sex with men, people who use social media applications to find sex partners and those who have had skin-to-skin contact with people with sores or other symptoms of monkeypox — should be aware of the risk and seek medical attention if they develop symptoms of monkeypox.”
Symptoms can include fever, swollen lymph nodes and general body aches before a rash develops. According to the Centers for Disease Control, “Currently there is no treatment approved specifically for monkeypox virus infections. However, antivirals developed for use in patients with smallpox may prove beneficial against monkeypox.”
While most cases are mild and self-limiting, the CDC notes, “prognosis for monkeypox depends on multiple factors, such as previous vaccination status, initial health status, concurrent illnesses, and co-morbidities among others.”
The disease can become severe, and those more at risk of developing a severe case include those who are immuno-compromised, children (especially those under 8 years of age), those with a history of active exfoliative skin disorders, those who are pregnant or breastfeeding and those with one more more complications, such as a secondary bacterial infection.