The key difference between monkeypox and chickenpox is that monkeypox is caused due to mpox virus while chickenpox is caused due to varicella-zoster virus.
Pox disease is a complex viral disease in humans and other animals. It is marked mainly by eruptions of the skin and mucous membranes (skin lesions). Pox disease normally occurs throughout the world. The viruses that cause pox disease are from different genera, such as Avipoxvirus, Leporipoxvirus, Orthopoxvirus, and Parapoxvirus. Monkeypox and chickenpox are two different types of pox diseases.
1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What is Monkeypox
3. What is Chickenpox
4. Similarities – Monkeypox and Chickenpox
5. Monkeypox vs Chickenpox in Tabular Form
6. Summary – Monkeypox vs Chickenpox
What is Monkeypox?
Monkeypox is caused due to mpox virus. It is found mainly in the African continent. Mpox virus is very similar to the smallpox virus and belongs to the same genus (orthopoxvirus) as the smallpox virus. Monkeypox was first discovered in 1958 with a disease outbreak that occurred in groups of monkeys used for research. This disease can be spread through human contact with infected rodents or through skin-to-skin contact with a person who is infected. There are two types of mpox viruses that are generally causing monkeypox disease. One virus belongs to Central Africa, and the other one belongs to Western Africa. However, the current world outbreak is caused by the less severe Western African clade. The signs and symptoms of monkeypox may include fever, chills, headache, muscle aches, fatigue, swollen lymph nodes, painful red rash that starts as flat and later turns into a blister filled with pus, blisters crusting over and falling off, and sores in mouth, vagina, and anus.
Moreover, monkeypox can be diagnosed through medical history, physical examination, and PCR (genetic fingerprinting). Furthermore, treatment options for monkeypox may include giving the antiviral drug tecovirimat (TPOXX), which has been approved by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration), USA for the smallpox virus.
What is Chickenpox?
Chickenpox is a pox disease that is caused by the varicella-zoster virus. It is a very contagious pox disease that mainly affects children under age 2. Over 90% of cases occur in young children. However, it can also affect adults. People can get this virus by breathing in particles that come from chickenpox blisters or by touching something on which the particles land. The signs and symptoms of chickenpox may include body aches, fever, fatigue, feeling irritable, loss of appetite, headaches, raised red or pink bumps or papules in mouth, eyes, anus, or genitals that pop over, fluid-filled blisters that pop over, dizziness, shortness of breath, vomiting, stiff neck, inability control muscles, and dehydration.
Moreover, chickenpox is diagnosed through physical examination, laboratory test (blood test), and PCR test to detect the virus. Chickenpox can be treated through acetaminophen for pain and fever, keeping the body cooling, staying hydrated, injection of immunoglobulin, and antiviral drugs such as acyclovir (sitavig or zovirx).
What are the Similarities Between Monkeypox and Chickenpox?
- Monkeypox and chickenpox are two different types of pox diseases.
- Both diseases may have similar symptoms, such as red rash, blisters, fever, and fatigue.
- Both diseases are marked mainly by eruptions of the skin and mucous membranes (skin lesions).
- They can be diagnosed through physical examination and genetic testing.
- Both diseases can be treated through antiviral medications.
What is the Difference Between Monkeypox and Chickenpox?
Monkeypox is caused due to mpox virus, while chickenpox is caused due to varicella-zoster virus. Thus, this is the key difference between monkeypox and chickenpox. Furthermore, monkeypox spreads through human contact with infected rodents or through the skin to skin contact with a person who is infected. On the other hand, chickenpox spreads through breathing in particles that come from chickenpox blisters or by touching something on which the particles are landed.
The below infographic presents the differences between monkeypox and chickenpox in tabular form for side-by-side comparison.
Summary – Monkeypox vs Chickenpox
Pox diseases are viral diseases characterized by typical skin lesions. Monkeypox and chickenpox are two different types of pox diseases. Both these diseases may have similar symptoms, such as red rash, blisters, fever, and fatigue. However, monkeypox is caused due to mpox virus, while chickenpox is caused due to varicella-zoster virus. So, this is the key difference between monkeypox and chickenpox.
1. “Mpox.” Cleveland Clinic.
2. “Chickenpox.” NHS Choices, NHS.
1. “Monkeypox lesions” By Dr Graham Beards – Own work (CC BY-SA 4.0) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “Chickenpox Adult back” By F malan – Own work (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia
Leave a Reply