Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Health officials confirm first monkeypox case in Montana

This digitally-colorized electron microscopic (EM) image depicts monkeypox virus particles sampled in 2003.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
A Missoula public health official says monkeypox could reach Montana within weeks.

State health officials on Friday announced the first confirmed case of monkeypox in Montana. The case was found in Flathead County.

State health officials ran the test on Aug. 5. They say the test will be run again by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

State and local public health officials are working with the adult patient to identify anyone they had close contact with while they were infectious. The patient does not require hospitalization and is isolating at home.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Montana was one the last states to report a case of monkeypox. The CDC has reported more than 7,500 cases nationwide. The Biden administration has declared a public health emergency due to the virus.

Symptoms of monkeypox can include fever, headache and a rash that appear on the face, inside the mouth, and on other parts of the body. According to the CDC, monkeypox spreads primarily through direct contact with infected sores and bodily fluids.

According to the Montana state health department, monkeypox typically resolves itself without treatment, but can be treated with antiviral drugs. The state says it’s provisioning supplies if necessary. Nationwide, access to vaccines to prevent monkeypox infections has been limited.
Copyright 2022 Montana Public Radio. To see more, visit Montana Public Radio.

Aaron is Montana Public Radio's Flathead reporter.