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Date of last update: 10/18/2017.

Forum Name: Dermatology Topics

Question: White circles/bumps on upper lip. Fordyce spots?

 allpointswest - Sat Sep 20, 2008 1:38 pm

Hello, I am 23 year old male. Last year I noticed a white circle right in the middle of my upper lip. It looked a bit like a whitehead or a cold sore but it wasnt red, itchy, or painful and hasnt gone away in over a year. It also isnt really a bump, just a white spot under the skin. It was rather small, but still embarrassing for its resemblance to a cold sore. I I recently noticed 3 or 4 more of these on my upper lip and am becoming very concerned. Some are bigger and other smaller and worry if they are spreading or growing. My question is two fold,
1. What are these? After searching the boards I see they might be Fordyce spots.
2. How can I treat them or make them less noticeable. Is there any particular behaviors that tend the make them worse or make more of them? I smoke cigarettes (not to many a pack a month or so) and drink on the weekends.

Here is a photo:

Thank you so much for your time and help!
 Debbie Miller, RN - Wed Oct 08, 2008 6:11 pm

User avatar Hello,
It is possible you have hit this on the head but it would require a dermatologist to be sure and that would also be the right course for treatment. If you are correct this is a harmless condition, is not caused by a virus (like cold sores) and is not contagious, but since it bothers you cosmetically it is sometimes responsive to Tretinoin gel or even Accutane followed by the gel. Sometimes they are removed by freezing but you should not squeeze or scratch these.

Best wishes.

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