Monkeypox outbreak: Surge in cases among Thai teenagers


The rapid spread of the Monkeypox outbreak in Thailand has escalated alarmingly in a single month with 145 new cases, taking the total tally to 316. The youngest patient is a 16 year old male student with a history of multiple sexual partners.

Dr Tharet Krasanairawiwong, Director of the Department of Disease Control, reported yesterday that the majority of the Monkeypox patients are men who have sexual intercourse with other men, accounting for 271 out of the total 316 cases, or 85.8%. Of these, 143 patients, or 45.3%, are infected with HIV. The majority of the patients are Thai nationals (277), while 36 are foreigners, and 3 have not disclosed their nationality.

Predominantly, 198 patients reside in Bangkok, followed by 22 in Chon Buri, 17 in Nonthaburi, and 12 in Samut Prakan. The majority of patients are aged between 30 and 39 years old (152 patients), followed by those aged between 20 and 29 (85 patients) and teens aged between 15 and 24 (28 patients).

Over the past four months, there has been a continuous Monkeypox outbreak. In May, there were 22 reported cases, followed by 80 in July, and a significant increase to 145 in August. Almost all patients are Thai nationals infected within the country, reported Sanook.

Thailand has received support from the World Health Organisation in the form of Tecovirimat (trade name TPOXX), a drug effective against the Poxvirus group, for use in emergency cases. The drug is used to treat severe confirmed cases and can only be administered in hospitals.

Dr Sophon Iamsirithaworn, Deputy Director of the Department of Disease Control, said that the initial spread of the Monkeypox outbreak in Thailand was among the working-age male population. However, last month, there was a substantial increase in infected teenagers, with 16 new cases.

A 16 year old male student was confirmed to have contracted Monkeypox. He started showing symptoms on August 6 and was admitted to the hospital on August 14 with symptoms of clear blisters all over his body and inflammation of his genitals. The patient had a history of sexual relations with multiple partners.

The health authorities are closely monitoring the high-risk contacts, which include household members, for 21 days from the date of last contact with the patient. No new cases have been reported in the household to date.

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Thailand News

Samantha Rose

Samantha was a successful freelance journalist who worked with international news organisations before joining Thaiger. With a Bachelor's degree in Journalism from London, her global perspective on news and current affairs is influenced by her days in the UK, Singapore, and across Thailand. She now covers general stories related to Thailand.

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