1st death due to monkeypox in LA County resident, officials say

CDC and the Los Angeles Department of Public Health confirmed the death.

September 13, 2022, 7:00 PM

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Los Angeles Department of Public Health have confirmed the first death due to monkeypox in a Los Angeles County resident.

The resident was "severely immunocompromised" and had been hospitalized, officials said in a statement.

"Public Health sends heartfelt condolences and wishes of healing to the family and friends mourning the loss of their loved one," their statement read.

This is the first and, to date, only confirmed monkeypox death in the U.S., new CDC data shows.

No additional information will be made public for privacy and confidentiality reasons, officials added.

Last week, county officials were investigating the death of someone who had been diagnosed with monkeypox.

There are more than 21,000 cases of monkeypox in the U.S., according to LA County officials.

There are 4,302 positive monkeypox cases in the state -- the largest number of cases in the country, California Department of Public Health data shows. About 1,692 people have tested positive for monkeypox in LA County, according to recent data.

In Texas, a Harris County resident who had been diagnosed with monkeypox died last month, state health officials said.

According to the Texas Department of State Health Services, the patient was severely immunocompromised and died at a county hospital. An autopsy is currently underway.

Harris County health officials told ABC News they have no additional information to share regarding the case.

Health officials have insisted the immunocompromised get vaccinated since they are at an elevated risk of severe disease.

Most cases in the current monkeypox outbreak have been detected in gay, bisexual or other men who have sex with men. However, anyone exposed to the virus could become infected with monkeypox, officials said.

According to the CDC, monkeypox primarily spreads through continued skin-to-skin contact with infected people's lesions or bodily fluids.

In addition to lesions, which can appear like pimples or blisters, the most common symptoms associated with monkeypox are swollen lymph nodes, fever, headache, fatigue and muscle aches.

ABC News' Alex Stone, Marilyn Heck, Teddy Grant and Arielle Mitropoulos contributed to this report.

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