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Molluscum contagiosum

Molluscum contagiosum is a viral infection of the skin that causes small pearly or flesh-colored bumps. The center of the bump is often indented.

Molluscum contagiosum is most common in young children. In children, bumps usually appear on the trunk, face, and arms. In sexually active teens and adults, the bumps are usually located in the genital area. The bumps are contagious but not harmful. In people who have an impaired immune system, such as HIV infection, the symptoms are more severe.

In healthy people, treatment often isn't needed, because the infection usually clears up within 6 to 18 months. In some cases, it may take several years for the bumps to go away. Treatment options include scraping off the bumps (curettage), applying medicine directly to the bumps (topical medicine), and freezing the bumps (cryotherapy).