Sebaceous hyperplasia lesions are benign, small, smooth, often umbilicated (dimpled) yellow bumps that typically develop on the face of middle-aged and older individuals. They represent the localized proliferation of the sebaceous glands (oil-producing glands) that are normally present all over the skin except the palms and soles. 

Their cause is unknown but they are more common in immunosuppressed individuals.

Sebaceous hyperplasia lesions do not have symptoms, can be solitary or multiple and tend to persist indefinitely. They are a source of confusion for many practitioners due to their similarity to basal cell carcinoma. They can be differentiated from basal cell carcinoma by their typical yellow colour, lack of bleeding or ulceration and their presence in multiples. Other differential diagnoses include epidermal cysts, seborrheic keratoses and benign nevi. 

A diagnosis of sebaceous hyperplasia can be confirmed by biopsy. No treatment is required, but electrocautery, surgical removal, chemical peels and lasers have all been used successfully. 

At Heart Lake Cosmetic Dermatology, we specialize in the removal of sebaceous hyperplasia.