What are Xanthelasma?

Xanthelasma is the medical term given to yellowish spots, plaques or growths around the inner corner of the eyes.

These most commonly appear on the eyelids but can also arise beneath the eye.

The yellow lesions have a fatty appearance and do actually contain deposits that are high in fat (lipids). 

What causes xanthelasma?

Xanthelasma is often seen in people who suffer from high cholesterol or other fat levels in the blood and around half of xanthelasma sufferers will have high cholesterol (high LDL (“bad”) cholesterol).

Those groups that are more at risk of xanthelasma include:

  • Females
  • Aged 30-50
  • Asian or Mediterranean descent
  • Smokers
  • Obese
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes

Are xanthelasma harmful?

Xanthelasma are not dangerous in themselves. However, they can be associated with high cholesterol, so it is worth seeing your GP to check your cholesterol level just in case it is raised.

The appearance of a patch of xanthelasma can be quite difficult to conceal as the bumps are difficult to hide with makeup. Removal is the preferred option for most patients.