Fordyce spots

Last reviewed by Dr.Mary on August 7th, 2018.

What are Fordyce spots?

These are also known as Fordyce granules, Fordyce’s condition as well as “sebaceous prominence.” Fordyce spots are painless, small, pale spots or bumps 1 to 3 mm in diameter. These bumps are harmless but are often a big concern for cosmetic reasons. There is currently no treatment which is standard for these spots and physicians don’t usually recommend treatment. It is, however, possible to reduce the distinctions of these spots or get rid of them altogether.

These spots are usually large, superficial, sebaceous or oil-producing glands seen in the moist tissues which line some organs as well as body cavities or mucosal surfaces. These sebaceous glands are not associated or linked with follicles of hair. These lesions are asymptomatic, but irritation or itching can occur if individuals treat these same bumps improperly.

Fordyce spots may appear at any point in life, but usually, the frequency of appearance increases with age, with elderly individuals having the most significant number.

Fordyce spots Causes

These Fordyce spots are believed to be caused by sebum which is the natural oil of the skin. This oil gets trapped in a sebaceous gland that does not have hair. In most cases, sebaceous glands open into a hair follicle and its oil is secreted up the hair shaft. But in the case of Fordyce spots, no hair means there is no way to discharge the natural body oil secretions. Therefore, the cause of the bumps.

Pimples develop in sebaceous glands with a blocked opening. They lack this essential route of escape. As well, bacteria cannot gain entry either.

Bacteria live on the skin of everyone and these bacteria feast on the sebaceous oil. As the bacteria feed on it, they grow, causing surrounding tissue to become inflamed and painful, and this ultimately result in the development of a pimple. But Fordyce spots or sebaceous prominence do not cause pain nor have any symptoms of pus – and are not a skin infection.

Fordyce spots are not an infectious disease that can be spread around but instead are natural occurrences on the adult skin. But, because many men find pimples unattractive, they seek help for them.

Most of the time, healthcare professionals advise against any treatment. Nonetheless, laser treatment for sebaceous prominence has been demonstrated to some success to reduce Fordyce spots which are notable.

Fordyce spots Treatment

Eventually, Fordyce goes away without any treatment. Many individuals do use this approach for these spots. They are benign as well as being self-resolving. But others find these spots a concern cosmetically, and for these individuals, there are numerous products available in the market which can help the spots disappear quickly.

One such product is known as Tretinoin gel or cream which is a very popular and effective fordyce spots treatment. Many reports confirmed that by using this product the prominence of the spots was reduced. Experts believe that this product can be even more effective when used in combination with an alpha hydroxy acid agent.

Another treatment that is quite popular is treating with the Trichloroacetic acid chemical peel. This product helps to peel off the skin on the spots. This then, in turn, causes significant improvement in the appearance of the spots. But, this treatment when used on the lips can make the area very sensitive – making it a requirement to keep the lips moisturized. When the treatment is stopped, there is a chance of the spots to come back again.

Your primary care physician can talk to you about getting rid of these spots with a procedure known as cryosurgery. This method involves in the destruction of the bumps using cold temperatures. There is the chance that this method can cause tissue or nerve damage in adjacent areas surrounding the spots.

Fordyce spots Home Remedies

There are not many home remedies for Fordyce spots. This could be because most people ignore this skin disorder and just wait for them to go away on their own. But there are some home remedies which can be used to make the spots fade or go away faster.

  • Garlic is an effective home remedy for treating fordyce spots. Start including garlic in your diet, and you will probably notice significant improvement after a few days.
  • Good personal hygiene is necessary to avoid these spots from getting aggravated.
  • Any diet which is rich in Vitamins B Complex, A, C, D, E, and K, helps in reducing these spots and causes them to resolve faster.

As mentioned earlier, this condition of the skin is harmless and is not a health concern. It is only a cosmetic concern especially when it occurs on the lip and cheeks. They do not stay long, having a very short lifespan so there is no reason to get stressed about them.

Fordyce Spots Pictures

fordyce spots pictures fordyce spots pictures
  1. I have same thing on my lips which is in pic one. i am so worry about this any tips and help will be appriciated. thank you.

  2. Hi Dr Martin do you know after how long this fodyke spots will go from my uuper lip. Any help please . after how many years. Thanks a lot.

  3. I have these and after reading this article it has made me less worried about them being some sort of STD, thanks a lot ! 🙂

  4. Ah that’s such a relief .. I was starting to panic and was tested and had minor ones when I went.. thanks!

  5. Oh and came up negative for everything btw. And is it harmful to kinda like rip them off?

  6. i have these spots on my pen*s and they don’t look attractive at all. how do i get them off asap?

  7. how long before this naturally will disappear ?

  8. They WILL NOT eventually disappear on their own. Taking vitamins and having a healthy diet WILL NOT get rid of them. If you want to get rid of them for good, you have to find someone willing to use a laser, cyrosurgery, or burn them off with electricity or high-frequency radio waves. Some people say jojoba oil works. Maybe it will for you but it didn’t for me.

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