Sebaceous Hyperplasia Treatment In Gainesville, FL

Patients over 40 with oily or combination skin type and small, persistent bumps, yellow or white-colored bumps on the face may have sebaceous hyperplasia. While these facial bumps are generally harmless, they can be distressing and difficult to get rid of. Fortunately, treatment is possible with the help of a dermatologist in Gainesville at our practice. Contact Gainesville Dermatology & Skin Surgery today to schedule a dermatologist appointment and to learn more about our available treatments for a wide range of skin conditions.

What Is Sebaceous Hyperplasia?

Sebaceous hyperplasia is a benign growth of the oil (sebaceous) glands. Each patient has sebaceous glands attached to hair follicles all over the body, and these glands are so tiny that they are not apparent to the naked eye. The primary function of sebaceous glands is to release natural oils onto the skin to keep the skin flexible and hydrated. In some cases, however, these sebaceous glands can become enlarged and trapped with sebum, resulting in tiny, shiny bumps that appear on the face, especially on the nose and forehead. In addition, these bumps can occasionally occur in other areas of the body, such as the areolas, chest, scrotum, and penis. In some cases, these bumps may be misidentified as acne, milia, or basal cell carcinoma (a type of skin cancer). In these situations, your dermatologist may recommend a biopsy of the bumps to confirm the diagnosis.

Sebaceous Hyperplasia Causes

The exact cause of sebaceous hyperplasia is not known. The condition is thought to be associated with changes in circulating androgen hormones that occur as a person grows older. It tends to occur for patients starting at middle age. It is more common in fair-skinned people than those with deeper skin tones and more prevalent in those with significant exposure to UV radiation, such as through unprotected skin exposure to the sun or tanning beds. The radiation damages both the skin and the skin sebaceous glands. While this condition tends to occur in older patients starting at middle age, those with a strong family history of sebaceous hyperplasia may develop the condition at an earlier age.

What Are The Symptoms Of Sebaceous Hyperplasia?

Sebaceous hyperplasia appears as small, shiny, white-yellow bumps that are 1–3 millimeters in diameter. At the center of each bump is a tiny pit, and, in some cases, blood vessels may be visible. Patients typically notice multiple bumps at the same time that may be spread out or close in proximity to one another. Sebaceous hyperplasia bumps tend to occur most frequently in areas of the skin where there are many sebaceous glands, such as the forehead and the middle of the face, as well as other parts of the body. Without a professional diagnosis, it may be challenging to distinguish sebaceous hyperplasia from acne. Acne forms when a person's follicles become blocked and oil builds up under the skin, whereas sebaceous hyperplasia occurs within the subcutaneous gland. Contact us today to schedule an appointment with our dermatologists.

Sebaceous Hyperplasia Treatment

Sebaceous hyperplasia is generally harmless and does not require treatment, though many patients often pursue treatment for cosmetic reasons. Home remedies, such as the application of over-the-counter creams and topical ointments, are not typically successful. Our dermatology associates offer treatments for sebaceous hyperplasia for clear, healthy skin. A dermatologist with our office may recommend one of the following therapies for treating this condition.

Clinical Skin Care

One of the best ways to keep your skin in good health and help sebaceous hyperplasia is using proper dermatologist skin care selected for your unique skin type. Skin care that is formulated for those with sebaceous hyperplasia may contain ingredients such as retinol or salicylic acid to help prevent your glands from becoming clogged with sebum, as well as hyaluronic acid, which offers natural hydration to the skin. Additionally, patients with this condition should use adequate sun protection daily, with a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 35. Sunscreen will not only help you stave off sebaceous hyperplasia, but can prevent the development of photodamage, precancerous skin conditions, and skin cancer.

Facial Peels

A clinical facial peel may contain salicylic acid, a beta hydroxy acid (BHA) that helps prevent sebum from clogging oil glands. However, for those with sensitive skin types, it is important to note that chemical facial peels can cause irritation, redness, and sensitivity. Chemical peels may aggravate sebaceous hyperplasia if a patient does not pursue proper aftercare; follow post-peel recommendations given by your skin care professional to ensure optimal results following your treatment.

Laser Therapy

Your dermatology professional may recommend removing sebaceous hyperplasia bumps with laser therapy. During treatments, the laser gently smooths the top layer of skin and removes any sebum trapped in your glands. Laser therapy may be beneficial, particularly for those with highly sensitized skin types and skin types not suited to other forms of treatment for this condition. Also referred to as laser resurfacing, this treatment may be suitable for several skin types due to its non-invasive nature. Contact us to learn more about available treatments!


Cryotherapy often involves liquid nitrogen, or other chemicals, such as carbon dioxide and argon. During cryotherapy treatment, your dermatologist applies these chemicals to the affected area of the skin. Following application, the bumps fall away from the skin, leaving behind a smooth, bump-free surface. In some cases, cryotherapy treatment for sebaceous hyperplasia may result in discoloration to the treated area of the skin. Your dermatologist will discuss with you the most suitable treatment option for your skin's needs.


Electrocautery, also referred to as thermal cautery, involved using an electrical cautery needle to burn the lesions. It is the most common treatment method for sebaceous hyperplasia among dermatologists. Electrocautery is quick, painless, effective, and has minimal risks. Following treatment, the skin scabs and falls away, leaving behind a smooth area of skin. However, in rare cases, electrocautery may cause changes to skin pigmentation in the affected area. This is why treatment should be performed only by licensed skin professionals.

Photodynamic Therapy

Photodynamic therapy involves applying a drug to the affected cells that sensitize them to light. Controlled exposure to intense light can then kill the cells responsible for sebaceous hyperplasia. Following treatment, the skin may become extremely sensitive, leading to redness, irritation, and peeling. In most cases, patients require multiple photodynamic therapy sessions to achieve proper results. The benefit of photodynamic therapy over other treatment methods includes minimal downtime and a non-invasive procedure.


If sebaceous hyperplasia is severe or persistent, a healthcare professional may consider and recommend dermatology surgery for sebaceous hyperplasia removal. Surgically removing the bumps will prevent them from returning. However, depending on a number of factors unique to each patient, surgery may not be preferred over less invasive options for treating sebaceous hyperplasia. To determine whether your condition requires surgical treatment, please contact Gainesville Dermatology & Skin Surgery.

Antiandrogen Medications

While the exact cause of sebaceous hyperplasia is unknown, medical professionals think there may be a link between this condition and increased levels of naturally produced testosterone. Some doctors may recommend antiandrogen medications to female patients experiencing severe symptoms associated with sebaceous hyperplasia. Antiandrogen medications may likewise be recommended to patients who do not respond well to other treatment methods as well as those unable to receive other treatment methods.