Molluscum contagiosum is a skin condition caused by a virus. The virus leads to small, raised bumps appearing on the skin. The bumps are often painless and can eventually disappear on their own. 

How Do You Get Molluscum Contagiosum?

Molluscum contagiosum is contagious, so it is spread through contact with someone who has the virus, or by touching a contaminated object. In children, it can easily spread through playtime and toys. For teens, it can be spread through sports or other activities. Adults are also able to contract and spread the virus, most often through sexual contact.

What Does Molluscum Contagiosum Look Like?

The most common symptom of molluscum contagiosum are groups of painless lesions. The lesions are usually small and smooth and appear flesh-colored, white, or pink. These bumps are usually painless and can appear just about anywhere on the skin besides the soles of the feet and the hands. Those with a weaker immune system may find they experience more significant symptoms.

How Is Molluscum Contagiosum Diagnosed?

Because molluscum contagiosum has very distinct features, a doctor can usually diagnose the virus by looking at the lesions. In some cases, a biopsy may be required. It is important to have a doctor examine any new skin growths you find.

How Is Molluscum Contagiosum Treated?

For many people infected with molluscum contagiosum, no treatment is required. The bumps will often go away on their own. For those who are concerned about spreading the virus, have larger lesions, or numerous lesions, there are treatment options. The best treatment will be recommended by the doctor, but some of the available options are laser treatment, cyrotherapy, curettage, and topical creams.

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How Can I Prevent Molluscum Contagiosum?

There are some simple steps that can be taken to avoid contracting molluscum contagiosum. This includes practicing proper hygiene and washing your hands with soap and water frequently. One should also avoid sharing personal items or sports gear that has come into contact with another’s bare skin. 

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Board-Certified Dermatologist Dr. Alissa Lamoureux

Skin Dermatology is a full-service dermatology practice created by Dr. Alissa Lamoureux. Dr. Lamoureux is a board-certified medical dermatologist and can help diagnose and treat a wide variety of skin conditions. If you are worried about your skin or are interested in molluscum contagiosum treatment, contact us today. 

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