Molluscum contagiosum is a skin infection that is caused by a virus. The virus can spread easily from person to person, and it often affects children. Symptoms of molluscum contagiosum include small bumps on the skin that may be itchy or sore. In some cases, the bumps can grow into clusters. There is no cure for molluscum contagiosum, but the infection will usually go away on its own within a few months. Treatment options include topical ointments or creams, freezing the bumps off with liquid nitrogen, or surgically removing them. Prevention tips include washing your hands regularly and avoiding contact with infected people.
What is molluscum contagiosum?
Molluscum contagiosum is a skin infection that is caused by a virus. The virus causes raised, flesh-coloured bumps to form on the skin. Molluscum contagiosum is contagious and can be passed from person to person through direct contact or contact with contaminated surfaces. The bumps typically go away on their own within a few months, but the virus can remain in the body for years and cause new bumps to form.
Causes of molluscum contagiosum
Molluscum contagiosum is a skin infection that's caused by a virus. The virus is called the molluscum contagiosum virus (MCV). It's a member of the poxvirus family. MCV is spread through close contact with someone who has the infection. It can also be spread through contact with objects or surfaces that have the virus on them, such as towels, clothing, or doorknobs. The virus can also be spread through sexual contact.
People of any age can get molluscum contagiosum, but it's most common in children between 1 and 10 years old. The infection is more common in kids who attend daycare or who have close contact with other children, such as brothers and sisters.
Molluscum contagiosum usually causes a mild skin infection. The infection is not painful and doesn't usually cause any other symptoms. However, the virus can sometimes spread to other parts of the body, such as the genitals. This can cause more serious problems, such as genital warts.
How is molluscum contagiosum spread?
The molluscum contagiosum virus is easily spread from person to person. It can be passed through close physical contacts, such as touching or hugging, or by sharing contaminated items, such as towels or clothing. The virus can also be spread through sexual contact.
Molluscum contagiosum is most commonly spread among children. This is likely because they often have close physical contact with each other and are less likely to practice good hygiene habits. The virus can also be spread from children to adults.
Who is at risk of developing molluscum contagiosum?
Molluscum contagiosum is a viral infection that is passed from person to person through contact. It is most often seen in children but can occur in adults as well. The virus can spread through close personal contact, such as touching or sexual contact. It can also spread through shared objects, such as towels or clothing. People with weakened immune systems are at increased risk for developing molluscum contagiosum.
Signs and symptoms of molluscum contagiosum
Molluscum contagiosum is a skin infection that is caused by a virus. The main symptom is the development of small, raised bumps on the skin. These bumps are usually round or oval-shaped and have a dimple in the centre. They may be pink, white, or flesh-coloured. Molluscum contagiosum bumps are usually not painful but can be itchy. The bumps can occur anywhere on the body but are most commonly found on the face, chest, stomach, arms, or legs.
The virus that causes molluscum contagiosum is spread through direct contact with an infected person or object. It can also be spread through sexual contact. The virus can remain infectious for several weeks.
Complications of molluscum contagiosum
Molluscum contagiosum generally resolves without complications. However, in some cases, the infection may lead to complications, such as:
- Skin infections: Bacteria can enter the skin through breaks in the molluscum contagiosum bumps and cause a skin infection.
- Scars: In rare cases, molluscum contagiosum can lead to scars.
- Spread of infection: Molluscum contagiosum can spread to other parts of the body or to other people. It is important to avoid scratching or picking at the bumps to prevent the spread of infection.
If you have molluscum contagiosum, it is important to see a doctor or dermatologist for treatment. Treatment can help to resolve the infection and prevent complications.
Treatment of molluscum contagiosum
There is no cure for molluscum contagiosum, but the bumps usually go away on their own within 6 to 12 months. In some cases, they may last for several years. Treatment is not usually necessary but may be recommended if the bumps are causing discomfort or are spreading to other parts of the body.
There are several treatment options available for molluscum contagiosum, including:
- Cryotherapy: This involves freezing the bumps with liquid nitrogen.
- Topical creams: These can help to relieve the itchiness and pain associated with molluscum contagiosum.
- Oral medications: In some cases, oral medications may be prescribed to help clear the infection.
- Surgery: In severe cases, surgery may be necessary to remove the bumps. This is usually reserved for adults as it can leave scarring.
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Molluscum contagiosum is a viral infection that is passed from person to person through contact. It is most often seen in children but can occur in adults as well. The main symptom is the development of small, raised bumps on the skin. These bumps are usually round or oval-shaped and have a dimple in the centre. Molluscum contagiosum is generally not painful but can be itchy. The infection will usually go away on its own within 6 to 12 months, but treatment may be necessary if the bumps are causing discomfort or are spreading to other parts of the body.