Molluscum contagiosum is a type of skin rash caused by virus. It produces pearl shaped lesions or papules on the surface of the skin. This type of rash was first identified in 1817. The virus that causes this rash belongs to Poxvirus family. This virus is responsible for causing only 1% of the total skin disorders. Incidentally, boys are more affected with this rash than girls.
As said earlier, the virus of Poxvirus family is the main cause for Molluscum contagiosum. The infection is contagious and spreads easily by sharing towels, soaps and other cosmetics of affected person. When a child touches or hugs the other child who is infected (direct skin contact) he has more chance of getting this infection.
In adults, this virus can spread through sexual contact also. You can find such lesions on the genitals of the partner and by having intercourse with the affected person you will easily get this rash.
People who have HIV or immunity related disease, is likely to get this skin rash.
Again, molluscum contagiosum will spread from one part of the body to other parts by touching it with hands. Individuals who share bathtubs, swimming pools, towels and other clothing have increased chance for getting this virus. It may also spread through surgical procedure, if your surgeon has lesions on his hands.
You can observe small papules or lesions on the affected part of the skin. It resembles the shape of pearl. It is more or less reddish or pink in color. The papules will follow a lining and it often arises after a minor injury or scratch. Irritation makes the virus to spread to other parts of the body. These lesions do not cause any pain and will have a dimple in the center. They grow up to 3-6 mm in length and some get enlarged up to 3 cm.
The papules are often seen in hands, neck, arms and legs in children and on adults on the abdomen, thighs and genitals.
Your physician will do physical examination and skin biopsy (cutting a small portion of affected skin and testing it).
Pictures of Molluscum Contagiosum :
Images, Pics, Pictures and Photos of Molluscum Contagiosum
In healthy individuals, molluscum contagiosum do not require any treatment, since it will settle on its own. People with lowered immunity will definitely need strong medications.
Lesions can be removed by cautering, by freezing it through liquid nitrogen and by surgical process. Small scars will be left behind in the place of lesions which have been removed. Sometimes it may cause blisters on the affected area after removal of warts.
Creams containing trichloroacetic acid, cantharidin, podophyllotoxin are prescribed for treating this skin rash.
You should maintain personal hygiene for not getting this type of skin rash. Avoid sharing towels and clothing from others and do not use public toilets. Avoid having sex with unknown people who may have infection.