Severe Manifestations of Monkeypox among People who are Immunocompromised Due to HIV or Other Conditions

Content From: Centers for Disease Control and PreventionPublished: September 30, 20222 min read


Cross-posted from CDC Health Alert Network

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Distributed via the CDC Health Alert Network

September 29, 2022 02:15 PM ET, CDCHAN-00475


The purpose of this Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Health Alert Network (HAN) Health Advisory is to inform healthcare providers that

  1. Severe manifestations of monkeypox have been observed in the United States in the current outbreak.
  2. People who are immunocompromised due to HIV or other conditions are at higher risk for severe manifestations of monkeypox than people who are immunocompetent.
  3. Because people with HIV-associated immunocompromise are at risk for severe manifestations of monkeypox, the HIV status of all sexually active adults and adolescents with suspected or confirmed monkeypox should be determined.
  4. There are diagnostic and clinical management strategies that may help address severe manifestations of monkeypox.


Since May 2022, more than 25,000 monkeypox cases have been identified in the United States. During the current outbreak in the United States, 38 percent of people diagnosed with monkeypox were coinfected with HIV1 and most reported cases of monkeypox with severe manifestations have been among people living with untreated HIV.

Some patients with monkeypox in the United States have experienced prolonged hospitalizations or substantial morbidity; deaths have occurred. As the monkeypox outbreak has progressed, an increasing proportion of cases have been identified among Black and Hispanic/Latino people.  Black and Hispanic/Latino people are disproportionately affected by HIV.

Severe manifestations of monkeypox can occur in both immunocompetent and immunocompromised people; however, most people diagnosed with monkeypox have had mild-to-moderate clinical courses. Of the people with severe manifestations of monkeypox for whom CDC has been consulted, the majority have had HIV with CD4 counts <200 cells/ml, indicating substantial immunosuppression. Healthcare providers should recognize underlying risk factors for severe disease, optimize immune function, and when appropriate, initiate medical countermeasures (such as tecovirimat and vaccinia immunoglobulin) early to prevent or mitigate severe disease.

During the current outbreak, CDC has received reports of people with monkeypox who have severe manifestations of disease, including but not limited to...

Read the rest of the release here.