(HealthDay News) – The incidence of sexually transmitted molluscum contagiosum virus (STMC) may be linked to hair removal in the genital area, according to a letter published online March 18 in Sexually Transmitted Infections.

Noting that the prevalence of STMC has increased in the last decade, François Desruelles, MD, from a private office of dermatology in Nice, France, and colleagues performed a case study involving 30 cases of STMC (median age, 29.5 years; 24 men) presenting at a private office of dermatology from January 2011–March 2012.

The researchers found that the lesions were located on the pubis with extension on the abdomen (four cases) and legs (one case). Associated lesions were identified in 10 cases and included pili incarnati, condylomas, staphylococcal folliculitis, and epidermoid cyst and scars. 93% of the presenting cases had used hair removal, including shaving (70%), clipping (13%), and waxing (10%).

“In spite of its limitations, this case study suggests that hair removal (laser excluded) could be a risk factor for ‘minor’ sexually transmitted infections such as STMC and perhaps condylomas,” the authors write. “Future studies should be controlled and consider typing the MCV to see whether the prevalence of MCV2 has increased, especially in the genital area.”

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