Pediatric Dermatology

Pediatric Molluscum Contagiosum: Reflections on the Last Challenging Poxvirus Infection, Part 1

Molluscum contagiosum (MC) is a common dermatologic infection that usually affects school-aged children, sexually active young adults, and immunocompromised individuals. It is a benign and self-limiting disease, with most cases undergoing spontaneous resolution within 6 to 9 months. However, a more severe and prolonged course is associated with immunosuppression or atopic dermatitis (AD). Management can be challenging; it needs to be decided whether to treat MC or let it run its natural course. It may be managed with reassurance and benign neglect; however, therapeutic intervention may be indicated to prevent autoinoculation and transmission, especially in patients at risk for severe disease. Guardians concerned about cosmesis should understand that therapy may leave pigmentary alterations and sometimes scars. The 3 major therapeutic modalities employed are physical destruction, immunomodulation, and antiviral agents. Combinations of these therapies may be employed. Therapeutic modalities will be discussed in part 2.


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