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Home > Health Hub > Article > MOLLUSCUM CONTAGIOSUM


Medikoe Wellness Expert

Medikoe Wellness Expert

  80 feet road indira nagar, Bengaluru     Aug 22, 2019

   3 min     



Molluscum contagious is a viral infection of the skin that causes round, firm, painless bumps which vary in size. These bumps are called molluscum bodies, Mollusca, or condyloma subcutaneum. Molluscum contagiosum also spreads through person to person contact and contact with infected objects.

It is most common in children but can affect adults also, particularly those who have a weakened the immune system. The bumps associated with molluscum contagiosum usually disappear within a year without treatment.

The virus that causes molluscum contagiosum spreads easily through skin to skin contact, contact with contaminated objects, sexual contact with an affected partner, and scratching or rubbing the bumps.

What are the symptoms of Molluscum Contagiosum?

Symptoms of molluscum contagiosum include bumps on the skin that:

  • Are raised, round and flesh-coloured
  • Are small
  • Can become red and inflame
  • Maybe itchy
  • Can be easily removed by scratching or rubbing
  • Usually appear on face, neck, armpits, and tops of the hand
  • May be seen on genitals, lower abdomen and inner upper thighs in adults if the infection was sexually transmitted.

What are the risk factors and complications associated with Molluscum contagiosum?

Molluscum contagiosum infections may occur in people with weakened immune systems. The bumps caused by it may become red and inflamed. Avoid scratching the bumps to prevent severe infection. If lesions appear on the eyelids, pink eye can develop.

How can you prevent Molluscum contagiosum?

You can prevent the virus from spreading by:

  • Keeping your hands clean.
  • Avoid touching and scratching the bumps.
  • Avoid sharing personal items which include clothing, towels, hairbrushes and other personal things.
  • Avoid sexual contact with the infected person.
  • Cover the bumps with any cloth when you are around the others, to prevent direct contact.

How is Molluscum contagiosum diagnosed?

It can usually be diagnosed just by looking at the bumps. The doctor may take skin scrapings from the infected area and view under the microscope to avoid any confusion. 

How is Molluscum contagiosum treated?

Molluscum contagiosum gets better without any medication in six to 12 months. But maybe the bumps will continue to develop for up to five years. You will be no longer contagious once the bumps are gone.

It is recommended to remove lesions before they disappear on their own, especially in adults, because they are so contagious. The doctor will administer general anaesthesia before removing the lesions to lessen the discomfort.

Five methods can remove lesions:

  • Scraping: It involves scraping the papule away using a curet, a spoon-shaped instrument with a sharp edge, possibly under local anaesthesia.
  • Freezing (cryotherapy): In this procedure, the pressurized liquid spray is used to freeze the papule. Each lesion is frozen for up to 10 seconds, or until a layer of ice forms over the spot and surrounding skin.
  • Diathermy: In this procedure, a heated electrical device is used to burn off the Mollusca under local anaesthesia.
  • Laser therapy: In this procedure, intense, narrow beams of light are used to treat MCV.
  • Chemical treatment: In this procedure, the doctor uses a sharp metal instrument which I dipped into either podophylin or phenol and then pricks each Mollusca. This procedure cause scarring and is not comfortable.

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Tags:  Skin conditions,

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