A Georgia woman diagnosed with monkeypox said she didn’t contract the “painful” virus through sex and is using TikTok to combat “misinformation” about the disease.
Camille Seaton, 20, started feeling unwell in mid-July and was rushed to hospital when she noticed blisters on her face.
The young mother was later shocked when she tested positive for the virus, declaring a public health emergency in the United States earlier this month.
Monkey pox, which is spreading across the United States after an outbreak in Europe this spring, is primarily affecting gay and bisexual men, who make up about 98 percent of patients, according to NYU biologist Joseph Osmundson .
Seaton, who is the first woman to be officially diagnosed in the Peach State, works as a gas station attendant and said she believes she contracted the virus while handling “dirty money” at her job, according to a now-viral video with over a million views.
The mother spent more than two weeks isolated in her home, with her 3-year-old daughter in the care of other family members.
Seaton also told the publication that her chicken pox symptoms were severe, saying, “I was literally in pain the whole time.”
“It was itching. It was joint pain. It was excruciating headaches. He passed out. You have to go through a lot before you start the healing process,” he added.
Alone at home, Seaton took to social media to combat misinformation about the virus, sharing TikTok clips.
In the viral video, Seaton states: “I’m here to tell you again that sex is not the only way to get this virus. Yes, it’s been mostly men who have gotten it, I’m just the first woman to get it accomplished at Georgia State, but every person is different.”
“This is no joke,” he further warned. “Wash your hands, wear masks, stop touching people, wear gloves.”
He continued: “The virus is not airborne, but it might as well be. You can catch it from sitting in a small space with someone who has it: a car, a plane, a room.”
Monkey Pox Outbreak: Where the US Is Now
Health agencies in the United States have counted at least 6,600 cases of suspected smallpox, and 1,000 more cases are expected to be added next week, according to epidemiological forecasters. Among the nation’s disease epicenters, New York City is battling more than 1,400 cases after an outbreak in June.
At the same time, the World Health Organization reports more than 26,000 cases of the disease.
How and why exactly the once “rare and unusual” virus emerged and subsequently spread across continents remains a mystery.
Dr. John Whyte, chief medical officer of WebMD, told The Post that doctors are “still learning about it,” but reassured patients of their worst fears. “We didn’t know [the current outbreak] be fatal And that’s a good thing,” Whyte said.
Meanwhile, after Seaton posted his now-viral video, many people took to the clip’s comments section to thank Seaton for raising awareness of the misconceptions surrounding monkey pox.
“I’m so sorry this happened to you. We need to be more careful. Thank you so much for sharing your journey and educating people about your experience,” said one.
The young mother has now beaten the virus, according to an Insider report. She has been reunited with her daughter and is back at work.
Although women make up a very small number of people who suffer from monkey pox, Seaton is not the first woman to document her battle with the virus on TikTok.
A New Yorker named Lou has also spoken out on the social media site, similarly saying the virus was extremely painful.
He expressed pain to the point where he said he could only drink “protein drinks” and that it was difficult to speak. “I can’t eat. I can’t brush my teeth. I can barely speak,” she said.