Health, through the Spanish Agency for Medicines and Health Products (Aemps), is evaluating and analyzing different therapeutic options for chickenpox on the basis of its feasibility and effectiveness, as antivirals and vaccinesthat yesterday the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), recommended managing the high risk close contacts.

It is also considering the possibility of acquiring them, an approach that the Community of Madrid has already taken: its director general of Public Health, Elena Andradas, insisted yesterday at the meeting of the Public Health Commission on the need to buy vaccines like the ones they are already administering. in the United Kingdom, a country that raised the alarm on May 18 with the confirmation of four cases of varicellato contain the outbreak.


Vaccine, imnavexauthorized by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) in 2013 against smallpox and in 2019 by the US FDA, where it is marketed under the name of Jyneosit is not available for sale in Spain, therefore it must be purchased through Aemps.

Developed by Bavarian Nordicthe drug has no specific use for the varicellabut it could protect against this disease endemic to central and west Africa by about 85%, according to experience with vaccines used before smallpox eradication.

Imnavex vaccine is not available for sale in Spain, so it must be purchased through Aemps

However, it is just one of the options that is being studied, health sources point out to Agência Efe, since all the suspected cases detected so far have mild symptoms.

In addition to Imnavex, there is also another formula, that of traditional smallpoxwhich was discontinued in the 1980s, coinciding with the official eradication of the disease by the WHO and the World Health Assembly, but is only authorized by the US regulatory agency, the FDA.

It’s about Accam2000a second-generation vaccine of very limited use (personnel of high-risk laboratories and military units), as indicated on the website of the Vaccine Advisory Committee of the Spanish Association of Pediatrics.


To these are added, as the virologist from the National Biotechnology Center (CNB-CSIC) explained to Efe, Mariano Estebantwo antivirals against smallpox: one is the tecovirimat, which has a mode of action in the extension of the viral particle in the organism that limits and prevents it; it’s him cidofovirwhich prevents the virus from multiplying, both human and monkey.


Monkeypox is mainly transmitted by close contact with body fluidsskin lesions or indirect contact with contaminated objects or even from the placenta to the fetus, as well as by large respiratory dropletsalbeit with a much more limited transmission than that of other viruses like SARS-CoV-2.


The incubation period is between 5 and 21 days, and in a first period of invasion, symptoms such as fever, headaches, tiredness, and lymphadenopathy.
Later, in the exanthematic period (1-3 days after the onset of fever), cutaneous lesions appear, in a variable number, which are initially erythema and then papules, vesicles and, finally, pustules.


For now, Madrid suspects 28 cases, of which it has confirmed seven, and from the Canaries one, although Health expects them to increase: the deputy director of the Center for the Coordination of Health Alerts and Emergencies (CCAES), Maria Jose Serrastated that he “had no doubts that if they don’t show up, they will show up more in other communities”.

To date, the National Microbiology Center of the Carlos III Health Institute has received 25 samples for analysis, including seven collected in Madrid that have already tested positive in a preliminary analysis and are awaiting the final results of the sequencing.


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