No need to sweat it… It’s a Syringoma!

New growths on the skin can be alarming and, of course, raise concern for skin cancer. But sometimes a bump is just a bump! Affecting approximately 1% of the population, syringomas are benign growths that can develop on the face and body. They are not a health risk, but can become itchy, irritated or a cosmetic concern for some patients.

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What Is A Syringoma?

“A syringoma is a growth that develops from the ducts of the sweat glands,” says Dr. Miriam Hanson, a board-certified Dermatologist at Sanova Dermatology. “We typically see them as flesh-colored or yellow raised bumps on the eyelids or cheeks.” Syringomas can also develop in the armpits, umbilicus, vulva, and the chest.

These bumps can develop in a few different clinical scenarios. “By far, spontaneous syringomas are the most common type we see,” says Dr. Adam Mamelak, board-certified dermatologist in Austin, Texas. “However, a familial form, one that travels in families and effects different relatives has been reported.” There are two other situations where syringomas are seen. Eruptive syringomas describes multiple lesions that appear on the chest and abdomen, developing at the same time. Syringomas can also commonly be seen in patients with Downs syndrome.  A specific type of syringoma called a Clear Cell Syringoma has been associated with Diabetes.

How Do They Form?

As with many conditions, syringomas grow over time within the skin. “They typically begin to appear in adolescence,” says Dr. Hanson, although they are quite common with older age. This condition is more frequently found in women.

Because of their appearance and location on the body, they can resemble other dermatologic conditions including cysts, milia and xanthelasma. “Syringomas can also resemble  basal bell carcinoma skin cancer,  and sometimes we are fooled,” says Dr. Mamelak. It is always advised to check with your dermatologist if you noticea new growth on the skin to ensure it’s not dangerous or a threat to your health.

How Is Syringoma Treated?

Syringoma are often an aesthetic concern, and can effect self esteem and self image. Thankfully, these skin lesions are easily treated in the dermatology clinic. “Electrodessication is one of the most common ways we remove these skin lesions with excellent cosmetic results,” states Dr. Hanson. This process precisely delivers a dose of electricity to each individual syringoma, burning the skin lesion while sparing the surrounding health skin. “Patients should expect to completely heal over a few days top a week.” Laser resurfacing can also be used to treat the syringomas. Regardless of the approach, A series of treatments may be required to remove the syringoma.

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Do you have bumps on your skin that you would like to have checked out? Please contact us today to set up your skin evaluation!

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