A man with HIV who caught mpox has described the "unbearably painful experience" as the disease left him unable to eat or drink.

Londoner Harun Tulunay contracted the virus, which was previously known as monkeypox, in June 2022.

Initially, Mr Tulunay dismissed his symptoms - high fever, shivers and swollen lymph nodes - as COVID-19.

However, as a painful blister covering most of his nose began to grow, he began to fear it was something else.

Mr Tulunay said: "It was an unbearably painful experience."

Newham Recorder: Mr Tulunay was left unable to eat or drinkMr Tulunay was left unable to eat or drink (Image: PA)

The 36-year-old was referred for an mpox test at a sexual health clinic, but his symptoms worsened before he received his results.

He was admitted to the hospital, unable to eat or drink due to the lesions in his throat, and treated with an antiviral drug, developed for smallpox.

Mr Tulunay, who voluntarily took part in Covid-19 vaccine trials during the pandemic, is now encouraging others to get involved in the fight against mpox.

Volunteers are being asked to support the mPower Trial for the testing of a new vaccine.

He said: "As a man living with HIV, I took part in Covid trials and other trials to help other people - people really need to approach this from that perspective.

"People who will participate in this trial will be part of advancing research that will maybe change lives.

"Being a part of that is such a great feeling - I know that from my own experience.”

Newham Recorder: Volunteers in London are being asked to take part in mpox trialsVolunteers in London are being asked to take part in mpox trials (Image: PA)

Sponsored by Moderna and supported by the National Institute for Health and Care Research, the trial will take place across the country.

This includes four sites in London: University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust, Mile End Hospital and Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.

Dr Rajeka Lazarus, national co-ordinating investigator for the study, said: "Mpox is a global public health threat, and more vaccines are urgently needed to prevent future outbreaks."

Volunteers aged between 18 and 49 years old will receive either one of the three dose levels of the investigational mpox vaccine or a placebo.

Visit the trial website at trial website at https://trials.modernatx.com/study/?id=mRNA-1769-P101 for more about participating in the study.