A Texas man described his “traumatic” battle with monkeypox as more than 2,000 cases are documented across the US.
The patient, Luke Shannahan, told Houston’s KHOU 11 that his ordeal started after the Dallas Health Department notified him that he had been exposed to the virus.
“I was at bars. I was going to pool parties. I did attend a music event over the weekend and recently all of those people have been becoming positive,” Shannahan reportedly said. “Apparently it was a contact tracing phone call.”
Shannahan said he spent the last three weeks under quarantine grappling with symptoms he recounted as “complete hell”
“You have these blisters that are inflamed and anytime it grazes something or touches something, it literally feels like someone is taking a potato peeler to your skin,” Luke told the station.
“The entire pain was just constant,” the patient reportedly said.
Shannahan told NBC DFW that his monkeypox symptoms were “100 times worse” than the coronavirus, which he was infected with last summer.
He was able to get a vaccination for the monkeypox, which is accompanied by full body blistering rash and swollen lymph nodes.
“It’s the most traumatic experience I’ve ever had. It’s the worst sick I’ve ever been,” he told KHOU 11.
The infection, which is spread through bodily fluids and prolonged contact, has been largely spread among gay men, but Texas just reported its first case in a woman, according to the outlet.
“It definitely is something that we need to be paying attention to. This is not just a gay illness, this is not something that just affects gay men that have sex with men. This is definitely something that can affect everybody,” LGBTQ advocate Austin Davis Ruiz told KHOU 11.
There were just over 2,000 cases recorded in the country, the CDC reported Tuesday. New York had 581 squares—the most in the US.
Monkeypox is far less contagious than COVID-19, according to health officials.