Health officials in Rio Grande do Sul, Ceará, and Santa Catarina are monitoring what are the first suspected cases of monkeypox in the country.
The patient in Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil’s southernmost state, reportedly arrived from a trip to Portugal on May 10 and began showing symptoms of an infection three days later, such as fever and body aches. By May 20, his skin broke out in a rash of flat red marks, typical of monkeypox.
Per the Health Ministry, all cases are considered to be isolated events.
Typically the disease does not lead to major outbreaks — in most years there are just a handful of cases outside Africa, if any. Experts don’t believe that a Covid-like spread of monkeypox is a major risk at this point, but the virus has been found in at least 23 countries.
Argentina and Mexico confirmed the first cases in Latin America over the weekend. Last week, the Brazilian Health Ministry announced the creation of a committee to monitor developments around the disease. Authorities in Brazil have recommended the use of masks in airports to prevent community spread.