Syringomas are common skin growths that occur more frequently in women than in men.

What are Syringomas?

Syringomas are harmless cysts that occur as growths off of the sweat glands. Multiple syringomas are common and often develop in a symmetrical fashion. They sometimes appear in clusters and are most often seen on the eyelids, neck, upper chest and vulva. They may occur on other parts of the body as well. The growths are often skin-toned but may be slightly white or yellow in color.

Syringomas are not cancerous and are considered in large part a cosmetic issue. Most of the cysts are small (approximately 2 millimeters) and produce no symptoms, although rare instances of itching have been reported. The growths usually develop after puberty.

Eruptive syringomas are clusters of syringomas that appear suddenly.

How are Syringomas Diagnosed?

Since syringomas are harmless and do not cause pain, most individuals simply ignore them. Patients are most likely to see a dermatologist for syringomas that occur on the face or near the eye out of cosmetic conern.

A skin biopsy may be performed to confirm the diagnosis of syringomas. This minor procedure can be done in the dermatology office under local anesthesia.

Treatment Options for Syringomas

Syringomas pose no medical threat and are not painful, so no treatment is necessary. If the skin growths present a cosmetic concern they may be removed. Removal options include surgical excision, dermabrasion, electrocauterization, chemical peels, laser ablation, cryotherapy, and topical retinoids.

When the entire skin lesion is removed, recurrence is rare.

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