Cures for cholesterol deposits under the skin

Written by jenn foreacre | 13/05/2017

Cholesterol deposits, or xanthomas, are slightly raised bumps of cholesterol that appear under the skin. They usually form on the eyelids or around the eyes, but they can also manifest elsewhere on the body. Xanthomas that occur anywhere other than the eyelids are known as eruptive xanthomas, and indicate high blood-fat levels, which should be evaluated by your physician as soon as possible. Most cholesterol deposits eventually go away on their own, but some xanthomas require dietary changes and prescription medications.

Treatment

Xanthomas on the eyelids are generally not biopsied or removed, unless they interfere with your vision. Xanthomas can be removed for cosmetic purposes; the procedure requires the use of topical trichloroacetic acid, which creates a temporary burning sensation upon initial application.

Eruptive xanthomas present themselves when blood triglyceride levels are elevated. This often indicates high cholesterol, which your physician will treat separately from the xanthomas. Eruptive xanthomas are usually treated via dietary and lifestyle changes, as well as the use of prescription medications.

Modify your diet to decrease the amount of fat you consume. Consuming less fat can lead to lower cholesterol, which in turn will often resolve the cholesterol deposits. Reduce the amount of beef, pork and lamb you eat, and avoid organ meats, egg yolks and products with animal-derived saturated fat. Replace whole-fat dairy products with low-fat or fat-free alternatives, and avoid coconut and palm oils.

Exercise regularly. Incorporating daily exercise into your routine will help you to lose weight, which in turn will lower your cholesterol level.

Your physician may prescribe medication if a combination of diet and exercise does not lower your cholesterol and resolve the cholesterol deposits. Statin drugs and bile acid sequestrant resins are often used to lower cholesterol levels.

Precautions

Cholesterol deposits, including those that are removed surgically, can return at any time. Deposits on the eyelids can occur even if you do not have high cholesterol. They are harmless and painless, though they can alter your appearance. If you detect cholesterol deposits, make an appointment with your physician, as the xanthomas could indicate an underlying medical condition.

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