Spain today announced 14 more confirmed cases of smallpox in monkeys, bringing the total number of cases to 21, the regional health authorities in Madrid said.
Outbreaks appear to be exacerbated in West Africa in recent weeks in Britain, Portugal, Australia, Italy, Canada and the United States.
Monkey pox is a rare, infectious disease, similar to the human pox that was eradicated in 1980. Although it is milder and most patients recover within a few weeks, in rare cases it can be fatal.
Symptoms include fever, headache, muscle aches, swollen lymph nodes, chills and fatigue. Patients may also develop skin rashes, which often start on the face and spread to other parts of the body, including the genitals.
There is no cure for monkey pox, which is transmitted through contact with an infected patient or body fluids, including saliva. The disease usually resolves on its own.