Molluscum Contagiosum

Skin Treatments
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Molluscum contagiosum

What is molluscum contagiosum

  • Molluscum contagiosum is a common viral skin infection caused by molluscum contagiosum virus.
  • It is more common in children compared to adult.

How can one get molluscum contagiosum?

  • Molluscum Contagiosum infection indicates impaired immunity against the pox virus.
  • Children are more prone since their immune system does not handle the virus too well. The child is otherwise healthy. In adults with multiple molluscum contagiosum lesions or with lesions in and around genitalia, there may be evidence of decreased immune status such as HIV infection.

How does the infection spread?

  • Molluscum Contagiosum spreads readily by skin contact or by sharing of clothes and towels. Scratching or itching can allow the virus to spread to other body parts.
  • In children, infection is often acquired in school or swimming pools. Children living in hot humid areas with poor hygienic conditions are mor likely to acquire molluscum contagiosum.
  • Sexual transmission can also occur.

How does molluscum Contagiosum appear?

  • The lesion of molluscum contagiosum are seen as discrete, skin-coloured or pearly white raised small bumps anywhere on the skin. They appear few week after ing exposed to the virus.
  • These are commonly seen on the face, may occasionally be present on the trunk and limbs. In sexually active adults, lesion are seen on the genitals or extra genital areas such as multiple, confluent lesions in immunosuppressed patients.

What should one do if he/she gets molluscum contagiosum?

Consult a dermatologist since it can be easily diagnosed by the clinical appearance of the lesion.

FAQ on Molluscum Contagiosum Treatment

  • A dermatologist can easily confirm the diagnosis based on the appearance of skin lesions. No laboratory tests are usually needed for diagnosis.
  • Rarely, when the diagnosis is less certain, the doctor may scrape the skin tissue or do a biopsy, and examine them under a microscope to demonstrate the molluscum bodies.
  • In sexually active adults, screening for coexisting sexually transmitted disease including HIV must be done.
  • molluscum contagiosum eventually shed when the immunity overpowers the virus. It can resolve spontaneously. But this may takes months to years.
  • Option include application of potassium hydroxide, liquid nitrogen, TCA, topical retinoids and imiquimod. Extraction with a curette may be performed.
No oral antiviral medicines are effective for molluscum.
Recurrence can occur based on the immune status of the individual to pox virus. If the lesions are not removed totally, auto-inoculation can cause recurrence.
A child with molluscum can attend to school and do all routine activities. The condition is not highly contagious like chickenpox infection and does not require isolation.