What is Xanthelasma?
Xanthelasma, or xanthelasma palpebrarum, is the yellow discoloration on the eyelid. They can be flat or raised slightly. They form when lipid or fat deposits accumulate beneath the skin. These lesions are usually soft and painless and can vary in size and shape. Xanthelasma typically develops near the inner corners of the upper and lower eyelids.
What causes xanthelasma?
Xanthelasma is primarily caused by the accumulation of fat (lipids) in the skin cells. The exact cause of this condition is not fully understood, but it is often associated with elevated cholesterol levels or other fats in the blood. It can occur in individuals with normal cholesterol levels as well. Xanthelasma is more common in middle-aged and older individuals and tends to affect women more frequently than men.
Is Xanthelasma harmful?
Although xanthelasma is generally harmless and does not cause symptoms, it can be a cosmetic concern for some individuals. The lesions can be unsightly and may affect a person’s self-esteem.
Who is at risk for Xanthelasmas bumps?
Xanthelasma can affect anyone, but certain factors increase the likelihood of developing it. These include smoking, being overweight, having high blood fat levels, high blood pressure, or diabetes. Xanthelasma is also more common among people with Asian or Mediterranean ancestry.
What is the treatment for Xanthelasma?
Treatment options for xanthelasma include:
- Observation: In some cases, no treatment may be necessary, particularly if the xanthelasma does not cause any physical or cosmetic issues. However, regular monitoring may be recommended.
- Topical Medications: Certain topical medications, such as trichloroacetic acid (TCA), can be applied to the xanthelasma to help reduce their appearance. This treatment option may require multiple sessions for optimal results.
- Procedural Removal: If xanthelasma is bothersome or aesthetically undesirable, it can be surgically excised, cauterized, or frozen. This procedure is typically performed in our office using local injection anesthetic such as Lidocaine.
Usually, Xanthelasma doesn’t vanish by itself. Instead, they tend to stay the same or even increase in size. Although they’re not harmful, you might consider removing them for cosmetic purposes.
What can you do to avoid getting Xanthelasma?
It is important to note that even with treatment, xanthelasma may recur, or new lesions may develop over time. Managing underlying conditions like elevated cholesterol levels through lifestyle modifications and medication, if necessary, may help reduce the occurrence or progression of xanthelasma.