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UT Health RGV


What Is Mpox?

Mpox, formerly known as Monkeypox, is a rare disease caused by the mpox virus, which is similar to the virus that causes smallpox.

Symptoms for mpox may vary, but almost always involve a rash with blisters on an infected person’s mouth, face, chest, hands, feet, genitals, or anus.

Mpox is a contact-based disease, which means it primarily spreads through close physical contact with an infected person’s rash, scabs, or body fluids. Touching objects, fabrics, and surfaces that were used by someone with mpox can also lead to infection. For your safety, avoid close contact with anyone who has a rash resembling mpox.


What You Need to Know

  • People with mpox can easily spread the disease through skin-to-skin contact.
  • An infected person can spread mpox from the moment their symptoms begin until their rash has fully healed.
  • Mpox typically lasts 2-4 weeks and most people fully recover without the need for medical treatment.
  • Vaccines for mpox are available, but they are limited. Public health experts recommend vaccines only for those at highest risk.


Some may experience flu-like symptoms before or after a mpox rash has formed. Be mindful of the following:

  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Backache
  • Muscle aches
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Rash that resembles blisters or pimples on or around the genitals, anus, face, hands, feet, and other areas


When considering a test for mpox, here is what you need to know:

  • If you have symptoms of mpox, contact your healthcare provider. Your provider will examine your rash and determine if testing is needed.
  • For specimen tests, a provider will use a swab to rub across your rash.
  • While waiting for your results, take precautions to avoid getting or spreading mpox to others.
  • Isolate at home if you can. Wear long sleeves, long pants, and cover your rash with bandages if you must go out. Keep a distance from others.


You can help protect yourself from mpox by following these simple steps:

  • Do not touch someone’s rash or scabs.
  • Do not touch, hug, kiss, or have sex with someone who has mpox or related symptoms.
  • Do not touch the bedding, towels, or clothing of an infected person.
  • Do not share eating utensils or cups with an infected person.
  • Wash your hands regularly or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

Vaccinations for Mpox

UT Health RGV clinical sites are not administering the vaccine at this time. Check back for updates on the availability of mpox vaccinations.


Treatments for Mpox

If you test positive for mpox, there are several steps you can take to manage your symptoms. Medications may also be available for those at risk for severe illness.



If you have an unexplained rash or other mpox symptoms:

  • Avoid close contact with others.
  • Wear a mask and cover your rash.
  • Contact your healthcare provider.

Additional Mpox Information