Over the last couple of years, it has seemed like we've been living in a world of "what disease will get us next?".

Of course, we're still dealing with the fallout of Covid. Now, keep in mind, I've had Covid twice, so I don't doubt the legitimacy of it, I just don't approve of the scare tactics that are behind it.

So while we all focus on the latest variant and whatever we're calling it (to be honest with you, I've lost track), now we have to worry about something called monkeypox. In fact, according to the New York Times, the United States has now declared monkeypox a "public health emergency."

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So what exactly is monkeypox? Is it deadly? What are the symptoms? Is it in Montana?

Monkeypox Vaccination Site Opens In West Hollywood, CA
Getty Images Mario Tama / Staff

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention:

"Monkeypox is a rare disease caused by infection with the monkeypox virus. Monkeypox virus is part of the same family of viruses as the variola virus, the virus that causes smallpox. Monkeypox symptoms are similar to smallpox symptoms but milder, and monkeypox is rarely fatal. Monkeypox is not related to chickenpox."

The CDC goes on to list the following as symptoms related to monkeypox.

  • Headache
  • Fever
  • Muscle and Back Aches
  • Swollen Lymph Nodes
  • Exhaustion
  • Chills
  • Respiratory Symptoms
  • A rash near the genitals

Ok, so other than the rash near your privates, these all sound like the symptoms they told us were for Covid, don't they?  Oh, and here is something interesting: as of this writing, there have only been two states that have reported no known cases of monkeypox, and Montana is one of them.

Monkeypox Vaccination Site Opens In West Hollywood, CA
Getty Images Mario Tama / Staff

You read that right, we've had zero reported cases of monkeypox here in Montana.  So which states join us with no known cases? It just so happens to be our next-door neighbor, Wyoming.

It seems the easiest way to contract monkeypox is through sexual intercourse.  However, there are other ways to get it as well and if you do have it, you can expect it to last 2 to 4 weeks. So be safe out there, and make sure you protect yourselves....in more ways than one.


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