What Is Molluscum Contagiosum?

Molluscum contagiosum is a common skin disease caused by a virus which affects the top layers of the skin. The name molluscum contagiosum implies that the virus develops growths that are easily spread by skin contact. Similar to warts, this virus belongs to the poxvirus family and enters the skin through small breaks of hair follicles. It does not affect any internal organs.

What do mollusum look like?
Molluscum are usually small flesh-colored or pink dome-shaped growths that often become red or inflamed. They may appear shiny and have a small indentation in the center. Because they can spread by skin-to-skin contact, molluscum are usually found in areas of skin that touch each other such as the folds in the arm or the groin. They are also found in clusters on the chest, abdomen, and buttocks and can involve the face and eyelids.

In people with immune system diseases, the molluscum may be very large in size and number, especially on the face. To confirm the diagnosis of molluscum, a dermatologist might scrape some cells from the growth and look at them under a microscope. Continue reading “What Is Molluscum Contagiosum?”