What is sebaceous hyperplasia?

Updated: Oct 05, 2020
  • Author: David T Robles, MD, PhD, FAAD; Chief Editor: William D James, MD  more...
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Sebaceous hyperplasia is a common, benign condition of sebaceous glands in adults of middle age or older. Lesions can be single or multiple and manifest as yellowish, soft, small papules on the face (particularly nose, cheeks, and forehead). Sebaceous hyperplasia occasionally also occurs on the chest, [1] areola, [2] mouth, [3] scrotum, [4] foreskin, [5] shaft of penis, [6] and vulva. [7, 8, 9] Rarely reported variants have included a giant form, [10] a linear [11] or zosteriform arrangement, a diffuse form, a nevoid form, [12] and a familial form. Lesions of sebaceous hyperplasia are benign, with no known potential for malignant transformation, but they may be associated with nonmelanoma skin cancer in transplantation patients. [13, 14, 15]

Typical facial papules appear in middle age, are larger than lesions on the areola or mouth, and display a central dell that corresponds to a central follicular infundibular ostium.

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