Following a Texas man's trip to Nigeria earlier this month, the CDC is now monitoring more than 200 people in 27 states as they may have been exposed to the rare West African disease monkeypox.
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While several are being monitored, there have been no additional cases of monkeypox detected in the U.S., The New York Post reported.
The man confirmed to have the smallpox-related disease traveled from Lagos to Dallas with a layover in Atlanta on July 8 and 9. This was nearly a week before being diagnosed with the rare bug transmitted through respiratory droplets and body fluids, according to the CDC.
Now the feds, with support from state and local health officials, are checking in with the individuals who came in contact with the patient, following up with them daily until the end of the month, Stat reported.
The virus causes fever, chills, swollen glands, and a rash accompanied by pus-filled blisters.
The disease is most notable in West Africa, and cases outside the region are extremely rare. The last outbreak in the U.S. was in 2003 when 47 confirmed, and probable cases were traced to a shipment of infected exotic animals, Stat reported.
Those needing to be monitored include anyone who sat within six feet of the patient or used the mid-cabin bathroom on the overseas flight.
The decision was also made to monitor airline workers and family members for possible exposure to the virus, as it has an incubation period of three to 17 days, according to Stat.
"It is a lot of people," Andrea McCollum, epidemiologist for the National Center for Emerging Zoonotic and Infectious Diseases, reportedly said. "We're in the timeframe where we certainly want to closely monitor people."