A common reason for parents to schedule their children to see me is for concerns over “bumps on the skin”. After evaluating the skin and ruling out more serious conditions, I frequently diagnose Molluscum Contagiosum in children and young adults.
-Georgann A. Poulos, M.D.
What is Molluscum Contagiosum?
Molluscum Contagiosum is a virus that presents with small, dome shaped flesh toned bumps (called papules) on the skin. There can be a few to more than 100 lesions in a given person. Young children are often affected by this condition and the virus is very easily spread.
Why is it so common in children?
Molluscum Contagiosum is often seen in young people mainly because of the popular athletic activities that children enjoy playing such as swimming, wrestling and gymnastics. The virus can be transmitted by direct skin to skin contact and easily spreads by sharing towels and clothing. Swimming pools are a common place where children come in contact with the virus. .
Signs and Symptoms
Bumps on the skin often appear shortly after being exposed to the virus. The “bumps” are usually located on the face, trunk, arms and legs. They are often painless, but may itch and turn red as the immune system fights the virus. The virus can spread by trauma (picking and scratching) and this often results in clusters of bumps in a given area.
Diagnosis and Treatment
Molluscum Contagiosum can take on the appearance of warts and also may mimic certain rashes, which is why an accurate diagnosis by a Board Certified Dermatologist is so important.
If the condition is bothersome to the patient, there are several effective creams that can be prescribed as well as in-office procedures which can be used to remove the virus.
Tips from Dr. Poulos
It is possible to spread this disease to other parts of your body and to other people so take action by not scratching or picking at the bumps and covering the area with a bandage. It is also important to avoid sharing infected towels, washcloths and clothing.
If you are concerned that your child may have Molluscum Contagiosum call our office at 440-792-4802 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Poulos.