Third case of monkeypox identified in Australia

A third case of monkeypox has been found in Australia.
A third case of monkeypox has been found in Australia. Photo credit: Getty Images

A third case of monkeypox has been identified in Australia in a man who recently returned from Europe. 

The New South Wales resident, in his 50s, was diagnosed with the virus after developing mild symptoms. 

The man is isolating at home, 7News reported. 

It is the third known case of the virus in Australia and one of around 643 known cases in countries where the virus is not endemic. 

The World Health Organisation said last week this sudden appearance of the virus in many countries suggests there may have been undetected transmission for some time. 

Monkeypox causes symptoms that include fever, aches and presents with a distinctive bumpy rash.

It is related to smallpox, but is usually milder - particularly the West African strain of the virus that was identified in a US case. It has a fatality rate of about 1 percent and most people fully recover in two to four weeks.

Experts believe the current monkeypox outbreak is being spread through close, intimate skin-on-skin contact with someone who has an active rash. 

The UK recently announced monkeypox was spreading there from person-to-person contact and people who have not traveled overseas had contracted the virus. 

"The current outbreak is the first time that the virus has been passed from person to person in England where travel links to an endemic country have not been identified," the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) said last week.