MADRID, 04 (MEDIA SERVICE)
The Association of People with Neurofibromatosis (AANF) has asked the professional community, the media and the Administration to highlight the differences between this pathology and monkeypox to avoid stigmatizing these patients.
From the Association of People Affected by Neurofibromatosis (AANF), they pointed out that some media as well as social networks echo information about people infected with monkeypox when in fact they are patients with neurofibromatosis (NF). “There is no similarity between monkeypox lesions and other skin diseases such as neurofibromatosis,” said Navarre University Clinic dermatologist Francisco Javier García.
Neurofibromatosis is a chronic, degenerative, incurable genetic disease that can be debilitating, caused by damage to several chromosomes and which causes the uncontrolled growth of tumors throughout most of the body. The physical, mental, sensory and social complications encountered by the people concerned are multiple and their evolution very variable, ranging from physical malformations to cancer and even death.
The lesions between the two pathologies are clearly different. Pediatric oncologist at Sant Joan de Deu Hospital, Dr Héctor Salvador, said that “smallpox concerns acute lesions (they appear in a few days) and vesiculopustular (like chickenpox). In the very early stages, there may be a pustular lesion and this could possibly lead to doubts for a person on the street. On the other hand, neurofibromas are lesions of very slow evolution (years). In the initial phase, they are flat, purplish and over time they tend to slowly evolve into wart-like lesions of various sizes. Neurofibromas are obviously not contagious lesions and, unlike monkeypox, they rarely affect the palms and soles.”
From the AANF, they ask the professional community, the media and the administration to highlight the differences between the two clinical manifestations so that there is no more confusion. “Many neurofibromatosis patients have been scolded on the streets, so we are appealing to social awareness and awareness to help us not increase the stigma they already suffer from,” said AANF President, Agustin Campos.
It is estimated that in Spain there are approximately 15,000 patients with some type of neurofibromatosis, two and a half million worldwide. The physical, mental, sensory and social complications encountered by those affected are multiple and their evolution is highly variable, a situation that also causes uncertainty in those affected, since it is a disease whose prognosis is unknown. and which is still feared that it could lead to some type of cancer or disability.