Molluscum Contagiosum Dermatologist2019-02-06T17:50:15+00:00

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Molluscum contagiosum is a common infection caused by a pox virus that can affect the skin

ON THIS PAGE, I EXPLAIN THE SYMPTOMS AND CAUSES OF MOLLUSCUM CONTAGIOSUM – AND HOW TO TREAT IT

Treatment enables people of all ages take control of their skin condition and get their life back

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How does molluscum contagiosum impact people on a day-by-day basis?

CHILDREN MAY NOT BE BOTHERED BY MOLLUSCUM AT ALL, THOUGH SOMETIMES INDIVIDUAL SPOTS CAN GET INFLAMED OR INFECTED

What does molluscum look like?

Your child may have small, round, skin-coloured or shiny pink spots with a central dimple.

How do the spots feel?

These spots are mostly asymptomatic but can sometimes be itchy. They can become sore and inflamed and sometimes infected if traumatised or scratched.

Can molluscum contagiosum get worse?

In many cases, your child will not need treatment because molluscum usually is self-limiting. You can expect any molluscum spots to disappear within a few months. In some cases, the duration of molluscum is longer.

Is molluscum contagious?

It is often the case that molluscum contagiosum lesions can spread to other parts of the body before settling on their own. Molluscum contagiosum is due to a pox virus. Therefore, it can spread to other parts of the body and other individuals. However, it is most prevalent in children rather than adults, who are less susceptible to it. It should be no cause for concern, and children should be able to carry on with activities as normal.

Is it treatable?

Molluscum contagiosum is a self-limiting condition. It clears by itself. If it is causing you or your child distress, however, then I can recommend topical treatments such as Molludab. These treatments are however often irritating to the skin. You should bear this in mind before embarking on such treatment.

What my patients love about my service

MY PATIENTS ARE MY BEST PROMOTERS

Please pass on my thanks to Dr Pratsou for her assessment on my continued taking of roaccutane.

She was completely right, I didn’t need a new course, I needed to move away from the drug. The creams she gave me and Cetaphil recommendation have meant my skin has been the best it’s ever been (ongoing and since I saw her) ALL SUMMER :))))) I’ve had zero problems…and I’m loving it.

Thank you once again.


Phillip, Acne

“Dear Dr Pratsou,

Following the consultation today I feel it appropriate to say thank you for your help in dealing with my rosacea.

On each occasion, I have visited your department I have noticed the kindness and cheeriness of all the staff I have encountered and particularly wanted to say that you made me feel at ease with your calmness and excellent manner.

All is much appreciated.”


Anne, Rosacea

“Thank you very much!!

You three were (and are) a great team!

I will remember you.

You made me feel comfortable.”


Ellie

“Tania,

Please pass to Dr Pratsou my thanks for her skilled work.

The wound is healing beautifully and now the stitches are out it looks as though it will be almost invisible once fully healed.”


Graham, Skin cancer removal

“Dear Dr Penelope, Rena & the team, (I can’t remember the nurse’s name who helped me during my 2 procedures at the Spire!)

I wanted to thank you for your support and help during a very difficult time. You guys do a wonderful job – and we are eternally grateful for your help.”


Clarissa, Skin cancer

“I would like to put on record how impressed I was with the operation you performed for the removal of the SCC on my neck. I cannot even see where the cut or the stitches were! I am indeed very grateful for the excellent work you do.”


Harry, Squamous Cell Carcinoma

“Dear Dr Pratsou,

I am very grateful to you for your diagnosis, recommended treatment and advice. Your letter to my GP sets out both the course of events, and your own analysis of probable condition and possible cause, clearly summarising our discussion.

I hope there will be no recurrence but I will certainly come back to you if there is.”


Ryan, Skin rash

“Dear Tania,

Please pass on my thanks to Dr Pratsou. I saw her this morning for a mole check. She was so lovely and reassuring. Please also thank the two nurses who assisted her during the mole removal procedure. I was very nervous, but they were very efficient, which meant I did not have too long to think about it, but most of all they were very kind. They kept me distracted and calm, which made a huge difference. Thank you also for your efficiency in both booking me in so quickly.”


James, Mole removal
Dear Ms. Pratsou,

I am writing to thank you for the care you have given me in the past few months. From the moment I walked into your consulting room with a lesion on my cheek, a lesion that I fully expected to be some sort of skin cancer (and it was), you have been thorough, reassuring, respectful and in every way professional.

You recognised that I had some insight into the condition of my skin and the procedures required to treat me. You listened to me. You projected expertise and compassion.

During the procedure to remove the growth you ensured that the atmosphere in the treatment room remained not only calm, but actually pleasant. Had it not been that you were excising a growth and sewing me up, I almost felt as if you, me and the nurse were at some sort of women’s discussion group. The time flew by. I had zero anxieties about the procedure and as we both know now, the wound healed flawlessly.

Thank you for your expertise and your communication skills and all round good nature. I feel very lucky.


Karen Tatom, Skin cancer removal

We have replaced the images and names of real patients who provided these testimonials to protect their privacy.

The first step to feeling in charge of your skin is to book an initial consultation

FIND OUT HOW TO GET THE SKIN YOU WANT

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How it works

FEEL IN CHARGE OF YOUR SKIN IN 3 EASY STEPS

STEP 1 – CALL US
STEP 2 – LET’S MEET
STEP 3 – RESOLUTION
CONTACT MY STAFF

Give us a call on 0118 373 5198 and we’ll help guide you towards a first appointment.

MEET WITH ME

I’ll see you and examine your skin before I recommend treatment. In some cases, I can begin treating your condition on the same day.

FEEL IN CHARGE OF YOUR SKIN

I’ll guide you down the road towards a resolution of your skin condition so that you can get back to normal life.

More information about molluscum contagiosum

FOR THOSE WHO WANT THE DETAILS

Molluscum contagiosum is a common infection caused by a pox virus that can affect the skin. It is most common in children.

It can cause small round firm spots with a small dimple in the centre. These usually cause no symptoms and can resolve spontaneously.

You may have small, round, skin-coloured or shiny pink spots with a central dimple

These spots are mostly asymptomatic but can sometimes be itchy

They can become sore and inflamed and sometimes infected if traumatised or scratched

They can become more widespread if your child suffers from a dry skin condition such as eczema.

A pox virus infection causes molluscum contagiosum. Other than creating spots on the skin, the condition is harmless.

I will generally examine any affected skin areas and can confirm whether the spots are due to molluscum contagiosum as they can have a characteristic appearance.

In many cases, you do not need treatment because molluscum usually is self-limiting.

You can expect any molluscum spots to disappear within a few months.

In some cases, the duration of molluscum is longer.

In some isolated cases, you may consider treatment. That consists of a topical preparation such as Molludab. This preparation can result in initial irritation of the skin and molluscum. That reaction allows the immune system to kick in and clear the remaining molluscum lesions.

Another treatment option we use in molluscum contagiosum is cryotherapy. However, children do not commonly tolerate this treatment, so I do not advise it except in specific circumstances.

“My child’s molluscum is spreading- what can I do?”

It is often the case that molluscum contagiosum lesions can spread to other parts of the body before settling on their own.

However, if this is causing your child distress, then I can recommend topical treatments such as Molludab.

These treatments are however often irritating to the skin. You should bear this in mind before embarking on such treatment.

“I am not sure that my child has molluscum contagiosum – how can I confirm this?”

I would be happy to see your child for an assessment and confirmation of their condition.

Sometimes I make an alternative diagnosis and therefore may pursue a different treatment route. On other occasions, it can reassure you to know that nothing else is going on and that this condition is self-limiting.

“Is molluscum contagiosum contagious?”

Molluscum contagiosum is due to a pox virus. Therefore, it can spread to other parts of the body and other individuals. However, it is most prevalent in children rather than adults, who are less susceptible to it.

I always advise that any affected individuals avoid sharing towels, clothing and bedding. You don’t need to keep children with molluscum off school or bar them from their normal activities.

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Questions and answers

RELEVANT AND INFORMATIVE VIDEOS AND ARTICLES

How can you prevent itchy skin?

There are several ways that you can assist in preventing itchy skin like soaps and clothing. However, you should see a healthcare professional to find the underlying cause of itchy skin.

About the author

Dr Penelope Pratsou | Consultant Dermatologist

MBChB, MRCP (UK) (Dermatology)

I’m Dr Penelope Pratsou, a skilled independent Consultant Dermatologist based in Berkshire. I have specialist expertise in the diagnosis and management of all skin cancers, and in performing mole checks. I’m a trained skin surgeon and remove skin cancers, moles, skin tags, cysts and warts.

I also have invaluable experience in dealing with all skin conditions, from the common skin complaints of acne, rosacea, eczema and psoriasis, to the rarer and more complex skin problems, having seen it all through years of NHS work.

After I obtained my Membership to the Royal College of Physicians, I undertook rigorous specialist training in dermatology, before being appointed as a Consultant Dermatologist at the Royal Berkshire Hospital, Reading. There, I helped set up and lead a busy clinic for the diagnosis and treatment of suspected skin cancer. I was also actively involved in supervising and training both dermatology and GP trainees.

Alongside my increasingly busy private practice, I have maintained an NHS practice in Oxford in order to continue to engage with challenging cases and to develop my specialist interest in skin allergy.

Learn more about me

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