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New international dermatology registry tracks monkeypox cases


The American Academy of Dermatology and the International League of Dermatological Societies (ILDS) have created a new registry that now accepts reports from health care providers worldwide about monkeypox cases and monkeypox vaccine reactions.

Patient data such as names and dates of birth will not be collected.

“As with our joint COVID-19 registry, we will be doing real-time data analysis during the outbreak,” dermatologist Esther Freeman, MD, PhD, director of MGH Global Health Dermatology at Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, and a member of the AAD’s monkeypox task force, said in an interview. “We will to try to feed information back to our front line in terms of clinical characteristics of cases, morphology, and any unexpected findings.”

Colorized transmission electron micrograph of monkeypox particles (pink) found within an infected cell (green), cultured in the laboratory. Image captured and color-enhanced. NIAID

According to Dr. Freeman, the principal investigator for the COVID-19 registry, this registry has allowed the quick gathering of information about dermatologic findings of COVID-19 from over 53 countries. “We have published over 15 papers, and we share data with outside investigators wishing to do their own analysis of registry-related data,” she said. “Our most-cited paper on COVID vaccine skin reactions has been cited almost 500 times since 2021. It has been used to educate the public on vaccine side effects and to combat vaccine hesitancy.”

Esther Freeman, MD, PhD, Director, Global Health Dermatology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, and associate professor of dermatology, Harvard Medical School, Boston

Dr. Esther Freeman

The monkeypox registry “doesn’t belong to any one group or person,” Dr. Freeman said. “The idea with rapid data analysis is to be able to give back to the dermatologic community what is hard for us to see with any single case: Patterns and new findings that can be helpful to share with dermatologists and other physicians worldwide, all working together to stop an outbreak.”

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