July 14, 2024
Hong Kong Man Attacked by Monkeys Contracts Rare and Deadly B Virus

Hong Kong Man Attacked by Monkeys Contracts Rare and Deadly B Virus

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Hong Kong Man Attacked by Monkeys Contracts Rare and Deadly B Virus

Hong Kong-  In a concerning incident in Hong Kong, a 37-year-old man found himself in a precarious situation after being attacked by monkeys at the Kam Shan Country Park, colloquially known as Monkey Hill. While the exact nature of his injuries remains undisclosed, what followed was even more alarming. A few weeks after the encounter, the man, who was reportedly healthy otherwise, began experiencing symptoms of illness.

On March 21, he sought medical attention at Yan Chai Hospital’s emergency department, presenting with a fever and reduced consciousness. Subsequent tests conducted by the Centre of Health Protection revealed the presence of the B virus in his cerebrospinal fluid, marking the first human case of such transmission in Hong Kong.

The B virus, also referred to as herpes simiae virus, manifests initially with flu-like symptoms such as fever, fatigue, and muscle aches. However, its progression can lead to more severe complications, including inflammation of the brain and spinal cord, potentially resulting in muscle coordination issues, neurological damage, and, in extreme cases, death.

Hong Kong Man Attacked by Monkeys Contracts Rare and Deadly B Virus

Hong Kong Man Attacked by Monkeys Contracts Rare and Deadly B Virus
Hong Kong Man Attacked by Monkeys Contracts Rare and Deadly B Virus

What’s particularly concerning about the B virus is its zoonotic nature, meaning it can be transmitted from animals to humans. In this case, macaque monkeys, common inhabitants of Hong Kong’s natural landscapes, serve as carriers of the virus. Humans typically contract the virus through monkey bites or scratches, or when exposed to monkey fluids through open wounds or broken skin.

Although instances of human infection with the B virus are rare, they can have serious consequences. While there’s currently no vaccine available, prompt medical intervention and treatment with antiviral medications are crucial in managing the infection. Additionally, proper wound care, including thorough cleaning and disinfection, is essential for anyone who sustains injuries from contact with monkeys.

This incident underscores the importance of exercising caution when interacting with wild animals and emphasizes the need for public awareness regarding the potential risks associated with such encounters.


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