Common on the torso, thighs, groin and genital area, molluscum can affect all parts of the body and are often associated with dermatitis and eczema skin rash. Molluscum generally infects children, parents & relatives of infected children, sexually active adults, and people with immune deficiency.
Molluscum is a skin virus not a blood based virus. For many people, contact with the virus will produce no symptoms. Where resistance is not present, molluscum bumps will begin to grow after an incubation period of two to eight weeks.
Research shows an association between swimming, bath sharing and molluscum contagiosum. Living in close proximity, skin-to-skin contact, sharing towels, clothes, bedding, toys, and living in warmer climates are also associated with higher rates of molluscum infection.11,12
Molluscum contagiosum is a viral infection member of the Pox virus family. Also known as Water Warts or Dell Warts, molluscum is common worldwide with an estimated 170 million sufferers, 3% of the world's population.
Stages of Molluscum Growth
The molluscum virus enters the body through hair follicles, scratches, and tiny breaks in the skin resulting in localised infection. 15 Molluscum begins as tiny pin-sized white/pearly bumps often in clusters of several up to hundreds. They are difficult to see in this initial stage.
Tiny skin colored bumps
Beginning stage bumps are best treated with Mollenol standard lotion or Mollenol Sensitive. These bumps contain very little pus and Mollenol Patches are best reserved for the larger pus filled bumps.
Over many days and weeks molluscum develops into small pearly bumps growing to 2-5 millimetres 16 pus filled lesions often with a characteristic dimple (or dell) on the surface.
Bumps and white pus growing
Developing stage molluscum are best treated with Mollenol standard lotion or Mollenol Sensitive using Mollenol Patches for the largest bumps. After application expect to see some inflammation around the bumps.
As the viral matter grows the pus increases and the molluscum grows larger. The dimple becomes more evident and pus may be visible exuding. Molluscum is now likely to spread over the skin and to other people. These bumps need to be covered to limit the spread.
The molluscum contagiosum virus is transmitted by direct contact with an infected person or indirectly via, for example, toys, towels or clothing. Child care centers and schools as well as public pools are potential places for infection. For mature adolescents and adults sexual contact can be a source - molluscum contagiosum is also an STI.
Pus filled bumps with central dimple
Purulent stage molluscum are full of pus and need to be covered with a Mollenol Patch if possible. Application of Mollenol standard lotion or Mollenol Sensitive will help reduce the molluscum. Of course, Mollenol Patches will not stick well to hairy or creased skin, for example back of knees or neck, and these bumps will need 2-4 application of Mollenol or Mollenol Sensitive a day.
The head of the molluscum bump may open. Molluscum which are pierced, scratched or burst run the risk of secondary bacterial wound infection. Piercing and scratching molluscum also contributes to spreading the virus. The likelihood that the molluscum infection will spread is now high.
Red lesion where molluscum grew
Generally bumps which are burst, open or scabbing are no longer molluscum and should be left to heal without application of Mollenol lotion or Mollenol Patches. Keep clean and an eye on the area as some may re-establish as molluscum or molluscum may start to grow immediately adjacent.
An inflammatory response to Mollenol is exactly the response we like to see. This is sometimes mistaken for hives or a rash. Some parents call this the “end rash”. It is also known as the BOTE, “beginning of the end”, response 18. An inflammatory rash can also occur in areas around the molluscum as well as the molluscum themselves. This is because the molluscum virus has infected a larger area than can be seen easily. A sign of this is that the rash shows up many little bumps (which look like hives) which are very small beginning stage molluscum. These bumps are inflaming and the inflammation is joining up to look like a wider rash.
Inflamed molluscum forming a wider "rash"
When molluscum reaches this stage only apply Mollenol lotion and Patches to molluscum which are not inflamed allowing the inflamed area to settle with many of the molluscum drying out and reducing.
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