TAYLOR COUNTY, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – The first case of monkeypox was confirmed in Taylor County Wednesday with the Abilene Taylor County Public Health District (ATCPHD).

According to an alert from the City of Abilene, the Health District is investigating the case, but no risk has been made to the general public.

What is monkeypox?

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says monkeypox is a rare disease caused by infection with its virus. The virus lives in the same family of viruses as smallpox, but is not related to chickenpox. The CDC said monkeypox is rarely fatal.

How does monkeypox spread?

Monkeypox is most commonly spread through contact with bodily fluids, lesions or shared items contaminated with the fluids of a person who has monkeypox – like bedding.

What are the symptoms of monkeypox?

Symptoms of monkeypox may include:

  • Rash
  • Fever
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Chills
  • Exhaustion
  • Body aches

“A rash symptomatic of monkeypox can look like pimples or blisters that appear on the face, inside the mouth, and on other parts of the body, like the hands, feet, chest, genitals, or anus,” the alert read.

While monkeypox cases continue to rise across the nation, people who believe they’ve been exposed to the virus should seek medical attention as soon as possible.

At highest risk of the virus include young children (eight years old or younger), people who are pregnant, immunocompromised and those with histories of atopic dermatitis or eczema.

For further questions and information, contact the Abilene Taylor County Public Health District by clicking this link or by calling (325) 692-5600.