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Xanthelasma

Xanthelasma1

Xanthelasma2

General Information
Xanthelasma is a rare condition characterized by soft yellow plaques involving the eyelids of patients. Fifty percent of patients seen with the disorder have high amounts of lipids in their blood. Females seem to develop the condition more frequently then males. The elevated plaques have well-defined borders and can range anywhere from 2-30 mm. Xanthelasma affect one or both upper and lower eyelids, especially near the nose. The condition is asymptomatic; aesthetics being the patients’ highest concern. Healthcare providers will suggest dietary restrictions and prescribe medication for the patients overall health, but that only shows limited response in treatment of xanthelasma. Treatment options to remove the plaques include cryotherapy, surgical excision, laser treatment, acetic acid solutions to dissolve plaque or electrodesiccation. The treatments may cause minor scarring and does not prevent new lesions from forming.

Epidemiology
Rare; Accounting for 32% in women and 17.4% in men in the United States

Etiology
Elevated plasma lipid levels

Pathogenesis
Localized collection of tissue histiocytes or macrophages containing lipid

Clinical
Soft yellow plaques over eyelids

Histology
Foamy histiocytes laden with intracellular fat deposits

Bibliography
1. “Xanthelasma” (Online). May 2006. http://www.emedicine.com/OPH/topic610.htm (visited: April 7, 2008) 2. “Xanthelasma” (Online). January 2008. http://www.visualdxhealth.com/adult/xanthelasmaPalpebrarum.htm (visited: April 7, 2008)

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