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Molluscum Contagiosum Information and Treatment

Molluscum contagiosum ( MC ) is a viral infection of the skin or occasionally of the mucous membranes . The infecting virus is a DNA poxvirus called the molluscum contagiosum virus (MCV). It is common worldwide and accounts for about 1% of all skin disorders in the United States. It primarily affects children and young adults. Molluscum contagiosum presents as clusters of small round bumps (papules) especially in the warm moist places such as the armpit, groin or behind the knees. They range in size from 1 to 6 mm and may be white, pink or brown. They often have a waxy, pinkish look with a small central pit (umbilicated). As they resolve, they may become inflamed, crusted or scabby. There may be few or hundreds of spots on one individual. Molluscum contagiosum is a harmless virus but it may persist for months or occasionally for a couple of years. It frequently induces a type of dermatitis in the affected areas, which are dry, pink and itchy. Molluscum contagiosum may rarely leave tiny pit-like scars.

Molluscum contagiosum is a viral disease of the skin that causes small pink or skin-colored bumps on your child's skin. It is not harmful and usually does not have any other symptoms. The virus is inside the bumps and is contagious by direct contact with the fluid inside the lesion. These bumps usually clear on their own in six to nine months. There are 4 types of MCV, MCV-1 to -4, with MCV-1 being the most prevalent and MCV-2 seen usually in adults and often sexually transmitted. The incidence of MC infections in young children is around 17% and peaks between 2-12 years of age. MC affects any area of the skin but is most common on the body, arms, and legs. In adults, molluscum infections are often sexually transmitted and usually affect the genitals , lower abdomen , buttocks , and inner thighs. In rare cases, molluscum infections are also found on the lips and mouth .

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