The case was identified in an individual who had recently returned from a trip to Nigeria.
Last week, the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Texas Department of State Health Services confirmed that there was a case of human monkeypox in a US resident who had recently returned from travelling to Nigeria.
Human monkeypox is a rare but potential serios viral illness that typically begins with flu-like illness and swelling of the lymph nodes. The illness then progresses to a widespread rash on both the face and body.
The infection can last anywhere from 2 to 4 weeks.
The virus belongs to the same family as the smallpox virus, although it causes a more mild infection.
The patient, who is currently hospitalized in Dallas, was in contact with other individuals on 2 flights from Lagos and Nigeria to Atlanta and Dallas on July 9. The CDC is working with the airline, state and local health partners to assess the potential risk of transmission.
A CDC laboratory test confirmed the case and identified the strain as 1 that is commonly found in West Africa. The strain is fatal in roughly 1 in 100 individuals.
Subsequent of this case, at least 6 other cases of the monkeypox virus has been reported in travelers returning from Nigeria.
Experts are still unsure where the virus hides, but it is thought that small mammals and rodents play a role in the spread to other animals.
Humans may contract the virus is they have contact with an infected animal, are bitten or scratched by an infected animal or prepare wild game.
Prior outbreaks have occurred in the United States as recently as 2003, but most occur in Africa.