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Nevus Sebaceous

What is Nevus sebaceous?

This is an unusual patch or lesion of hairless skin. It commonly appears on your face or scalp and is considered an unusual type of birthmark. Most of the time these lesions do not cause any health problems and are benign, which means non-cancerous but later in life they could become cancerous. Nevus sebaceous is usually noticed at birth or in early childhood. Most of the time the doctor who delivered the baby will notice nevus sebaceous shortly after birth but if the lesions or patches are very small they may not be noticed until early childhood. Occasionally nevus sebaceous is not noticed until the child begins puberty when these lesions or patches start to change in appearance.


When nevus sebaceous are seen in newborns or early in childhood these patches or lesions are smooth, soft, and appear more yellow or orange than the surround skin. When the baby is born this lesion looks like a slightly raised round bald spot that feels velvety when touched. There may only be one lesion or there could be a closed cluster of them that is surrounded by their normal hair. By the time the child reaches puberty they could become rough or bumpy to the touch.

Possible Causes of Nevus Sebaceous

It is thought that nevus sebaceous arises as the outer layers of the baby’s skin are first formed during prenatal development According to research that has been done it could be a minor genetic defect that is responsible for the abnormalities in the formation of the baby’s sebaceous glands within the skin of their face and scalp. As the child gets older and goes into puberty it can cause their nevus sebaceous to become larger and develop a wart-like appearance. Nevus sebaceous is also caused by a person have too many sebaceous glands concentrated in the area where the lesion or patch appears. Your sebaceous glands are the glands that manufacture sebum which is an oily substance that makes it way to the outer layer of your skin and helps keep your skin healthy.


If these lesions or patches are small and noncancerous they will not need aggressive treatment. It is easy to conceal the patches or lesions on the scalp by parting and wearing your hair a different way or by wearing a hat. If it is left untreated there is a small risk of it becoming malignant. If it does become malignant it will form as a rough hard tumor and will potentially grow very big on your head. It is unlikely if it is cancer that it will spread quickly to other areas of your body or to other areas of your skin. Nevus sebaceous should be monitored to make sure that it does not become malignant.


If it is found that the nevus sebaceous is causing concerns with your appearance or it malignant it can be cut out in an outpatient surgical procedure that is fairly simple. There is also a new promising nonsurgical option called photodynamic therapy which involves eroding the lesion or patch with a combination of laser light and acid.

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Nevus Sebaceous
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