Kathmandu, June 17: A 26-year-old Nepalese man, who was hospitalised on his arrival here from Dubai and suspected to have contracted the monkeypox virus, was on Friday detected with Leprosy bacteria in his body, the Ministry of Population and Health confirmed.

No traces of monkeypox were detected in the body of the man, who was admitted to the Sukraraj Tropical and Infectious Diseases Hospital in Teku region here on Thursday after he exhibited symptoms of monkeypox at the Tribhuvan International Airport on his arrival, health authorities said.

The patient was being monitored by the hospital after he showed symptoms similar to monkeypox. He had fever on Thursday and red blisters were spotted on his body and hands.

However, after conducting necessary tests, the bacteria of Leprosy was found in parts of his body instead of monkeypox, the government hospital confirmed in a statement on Friday. Monkeypox in Nepal: 27-Year-Old Suspected to Have Contracted MPXV Virus in Kathmandu.

While conducting tests on his skin at six places, the bacteria of Leprosy was found in three places in his eye and ear, the statement read. The health specialists did not suspect monkeypox as reported in some media outlets after he was admitted to the hospital, the statement said.

Until last month, monkeypox had only caused sizeable outbreaks in central and west Africa; the continent has so far reported more than 1,500 cases and 72 suspected deaths in a separate epidemic. So far, not a single case of monkeypox has been detected in Nepal, the statement said.

The ministry said that it has made necessary arrangements for making people aware and keeping vigilance against the possible outbreak of the virus in the country, said the statement.

Earlier this week, the World Health Organisation's Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus described the continued spread of monkeypox in countries that haven't previously seen the disease as “unusual and concerning”.

He said he would be convening an expert meeting next Thursday to decide if the expanding monkeypox outbreak warrants being declared a global emergency. That would give it the same designation as the COVID-19 pandemic and the ongoing effort to eradicate polio.

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