Sunday, 8 March 2015

Molloscum Contagiosum

Or... what the heck is that rash?

Squeaky's had eczema since she was a tiny Squeak. I know what it looks like, how it affects her, and where it tends to appear.  So when she developed a bit of a rash on her lower legs last week, I didn't worry too much. It blanched with the glass test, and didn't bother her.  Then some more bumpy spots appeared on the outside of her elbows. So I called the doctor and we popped  to show them what Squeaky has christened "my beetles", because some of them are a little beetley in their appearance.

Fair play to the (very young!) doctor, she didn't pull any icky faces, even though I'd been doing my best to hide my "ewww" for a few days.  She confirmed that the rash on Squeaky's legs was nothing more than eczema, with a little bit of hair follicle bumps (I get the same on the tops of my arms unless I exfoliate like it's going out of fashion, chicken skin I think they call it).  But that the rash on her elbows was something else altogether.  Molluscum Contagiosum to be precise.

I did the "WTF?" face (as opposed to the earlier "Ewww" face), and she turned to her computer, clicked away, and showed me pictures, and gave me a handy printout (the same one that is linked above.  If it's good enough for my GP, then it's good enough for me) explaining all about the "beetles".

Molloscum Contagiosum, it appears, is a viral condition, nothing to do with shellfish, except that it sort of looks like them - or beetles.  It's not something that has outbreaks, it's pretty much a constant in schools & nurseries.  It doesn't cause a big problem, and goes away of its own devices when it's run its course.  Unfortunately. said course is 12-18 months, and there's no real recommended medical treatment, just not scratching.

No-one needs a picture of the offending rash. Everyone needs gin in a tin.
The internet is being as helpful as it ever is when looking for information about any kind of health concern - i.e. a massive pile of  scaremongering, conspiracy theories and assorted nonsense about sudocrem or duct tape  (I can understand that, they're related to warts & verrucae which are successfully treated with duct tape, but really?).  I'm tempted to go to the local health food shop, who tend to recommend cod liver oil & vitamin c for almost everything in my experience, to see if they've got any better ideas.  They might be cheaper than the pharmacy, and you never know, they might also have some ideas for the nits that school are texting us about on a weekly basis.

Oh, yes.  Nits.  They're still a thing in school. In the same week as the Molloscum Contagiosum diagnosis, we've had two text messages about nits, and a factsheet about threadworms.  Am I sending Squeaky to a school, or a medical research lab?  Seriously, there's one a couple of miles away, and I'm beginning to wonder.  Germ vectors, that's what children are.  Tiny, mucky little germ vectors, that make me itch.


  1. That's a new one on me. It's amazing what nasty things they pick up at school.

    1. Exactly! The worst thing I was anticipating was bad language, not beetley rashes.

    2. Exactly! The worst thing I was anticipating was bad language, not beetley rashes.

  2. Yes been there .. had that .. not had it back * crosses fingers


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