Spain's monkeypox tally rises to 48 with 11 new cases

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Test tubes labelled "Monkeypox virus positive" are seen in this illustration taken May 22, 2022. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration

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MADRID, May 24 (Reuters) - Health authorities in Spain's Madrid region said they detected 11 confirmed new cases of monkeypox on Tuesday, bringing the total cases in Spain to 48, practically all in the capital city.

In neighboring Portugal, which along with Spain has been one of the main hotspots of the recent outbreak of the viral disease outside its endemic areas in Africa, health authorities added two confirmed cases, putting the total at 39.

The World Health Organization on Tuesday said the outbreak can be contained as more governments said they would launch limited vaccinations to combat rising infections. read more

Authorities have been investigating 237 suspected and confirmed cases of the usually mild viral infection that is endemic in parts of west and central Africa, in 19 mostly European countries since early May.

Most of the infections so far have not been severe, and many, but not all, of the cases have been reported in men who have sex with men. Symptoms include a fever and a distinctive bumpy rash.

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Reporting by Emma Pinedo, Patricia Rua and Andrei Khalip; Editing by Leslie Adler

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