Molluscum Contagiosum

Molluscum contagiosum is a contagious infection by a virus that causes tiny, wart-like bumps. Because of its similarity to wart, this condition is also called water wart - however, it is actually not a wart.

Symptoms of Molluscum Contagiosum

The symptoms of molluscum contagiosum are:

  • Flesh-colored bumps with smooth and shiny surface
  • Depression or dimple in the center of the bump
  • Pea sized or smaller bumps

Causes of Molluscum Contagiosum

This condition is caused by a molluscum contagiosum poxvirus.

Molluscum poxvirus
Molluscum contagiosum poxvirus.

Who Gets It?

Usually molluscum contagiosum affects young children and is transmitted through direct contact or shared towels and clothings.

In adults, the bumps are usually located on the genital area and inner thighs, and is usually sexually transmitted.

Treatment of Molluscum Contagiosum?

Molluscum contagiosum usually resolves itself within a few months. However, the following treatment may shorten the duration of the infection:

  • Over-the-counter wart preparations
  • Cryosurgery, where liquid nitrogen is used to freeze off the growth
  • Scraping with an medical instrument called a curette

It should be noted that cryosurgery and curette scraping are not painless procedures. They may also leave scars and/or permanent white (depigmented) marks.

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