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Jihyun Choi 1 Article
Detecting mpox infection in the early epidemic: an epidemiologic investigation of the third and fourth cases in Korea
Taeyoung Kim, Eonjoo Park, Jun Suk Eun, Eun-young Lee, Ji Won Mun, Yunsang Choi, Shinyoung Lee, Hansol Yeom, Eunkyoung Kim, Jongmu Kim, Jihyun Choi, Jinho Ha, Sookkyung Park
Epidemiol Health. 2023;45:e2023040.   Published online March 23, 2023
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  • 4 Crossref
AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDF
As few mpox cases have been reported in Korea, we aimed to identify the characteristics of mpox infection by describing our epidemiologic investigation of a woman patient (index patient, the third case in Korea) and a physician who was infected by a needlestick injury (the fourth case).
We conducted contact tracing and exposure risk evaluation through interviews with these 2 patients and their physicians and contacts, as well as field investigations at each facility visited by the patients during their symptomatic periods. We then classified contacts into 3 levels according to their exposure risk and managed them to minimize further transmission by recommending quarantine and vaccination for post-exposure prophylaxis and monitoring their symptoms.
The index patient had sexual contact with a man foreigner during a trip to Dubai, which was considered the probable route of transmission. In total, 27 healthcare-associated contacts across 7 healthcare facilities and 9 community contacts were identified. These contacts were classified into high (7 contacts), medium (9 contacts), and low (20 contacts) exposure risk groups. One high-risk contact was identified as a secondary patient: a physician who was injured while collecting specimens from the index patient.
The index patient visited several medical facilities due to progressive symptoms prior to isolation. Although the 2022 mpox epidemic mainly affected young men, especially men who have sex with men, physicians should also consider mpox transmission in the general population for the timely detection of mpox-infected patients.
Korean summary
국내 엠폭스 3번환자는 전파 가능 시기에 7곳의 의료기관을 방문했으며, 접촉자로 분류된 27명의 의료기관 접촉자와 9명의 지역사회 접촉자 중 주사침 자상을 입은 의료인 1명이 추가 확진되었다. 적시에 엠폭스 환자를 발견하기 위하여 의료인들은 전파위험이 낮은 일반 인구의 감염 가능성에 대한 고려가 필요하다.
Key Message
As a result of contact tracing of a mpox patient in the early phase of epidemic, she visited 7 healthcare facilities to be diagnosed which infers diagnosing those who are statistically not at high risk is challenging. Yet the risk of contracting mpox seems relatively low as only one of 36 contacts was infected; a healthcare personnel who sustained a needlestick injury.


Citations to this article as recorded by  
  • Clinical Features of Mpox Patients in Korea: A Multicenter Retrospective Study
    So Yun Lim, Hyeon Jae Jo, Su-Yeon Lee, Miyoung Ahn, Yeonjae Kim, Jaehyun Jeon, Eu Suk Kim, BumSik Chin, Jae-Phil Choi, Nam Joong Kim
    Journal of Korean Medical Science.2024;[Epub]     CrossRef
  • Transmission potential of mpox in mainland China, June-July 2023: estimating reproduction number during the initial phase of the epidemic
    Andrei R. Akhmetzhanov, Pei-Hsuan Wu
    PeerJ.2024; 12: e16908.     CrossRef
  • Genomic Analysis of Monkeypox Virus During the 2023 Epidemic in Korea
    Chi-Hwan Choi, Minji Lee, Sang Eun Lee, Jin-Won Kim, Hwachul Shin, Myung-Min Choi, Hwajung Yi, Min-Kyung Kim, Jaehyun Jeon, Jun-Sun Park, Yeonjae Kim, So Yun Lim, BumSik Chin, Yoon-Seok Chung
    Journal of Korean Medical Science.2024;[Epub]     CrossRef
  • Mpox exposure and transmission in healthcare settings during the 2022 global outbreak
    Kimon C Zachary, Lisa L Philpotts, Erica S Shenoy
    Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases.2023; 36(4): 257.     CrossRef

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