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Officials discuss updates on monkeypox in Arkansas



Little Rock, Arkansas — After the first confirmed case of monkeypox in the Little Rock School District at Southwest High School, there have been a lot of questions, and parents have wondered if they should be concerned for their kids.

On Thursday afternoon, LRSD sent a letter out to Southwest students, staff, and parents that stated that there was one confirmed case of monkeypox.

There are 50 cases of monkeypox in the state – thirty of those were in Pulaski County, according to the Arkansas Department of Health’s website.

There are 4 people between the ages of 18-24 with the disease. The age group with the highest infection rate was between the ages of 25-34 with 19 cases. LRSD and the ADH have been working closely together to monitor the infection.

Anyone who had “low-risk” exposure to the infected person was notified with directions on what to look out for. CDC defined low-risk exposure as entering a room or space where a person with monkeypox has been, regardless of whether the infected person was there.

A person who has exposure should monitor symptoms for 21 days after their last encounter with the infected person, according to the ADH.

Monkeypox can spread through contact with a rash, scabs, or body fluid. It can also spread from the time symptoms start until the rash has healed.

Symptoms can include fever, headache, muscle or back aches, swollen lymph nodes, chills, and a rash that can look like pimples or blisters. The illness typically lasts 2 to 4 weeks.

Right now in Arkansas, 47 of the cases are men, 1 is a woman, and 2 of the cases do not have any data.