Dec 2, 2023

Fordyce Spots, also called as Fordyce glands or Fordyce granules are scattered or isolated bumps in whitish-yellow or flesh color that could occur on the inside of the cheeks or on the edge of lips. At times these, 1-3 millimeter sized bumps cluster together also. In some cases in females it may appear on the labia and in males, it can appear on the scrotum or penis.  The spots appear at places on the skin where there is no hair attached. The enlarged oil glands or sebaceous glands are painless, harmless and normal completely and occur in around 70-80 percent adults. Fordyce Spots are not caused by any disease.

Fordyce Spots are flesh coloured or light yellow in color. The spots attain reddish color if they develop in the genital area and stretch out on the surrounding skin, thus increasing their visibility. Generally Fordyce Spots appear symmetrically and form on the inside of the cheeks and lips or on the outside of the lips. Fordyce Spots are not infectious, itchy or painful, are barely noticeable and can be unsightly in some cases. In males, during intercourse, the spots on the penis may bleed.

Similar to Fordyce Spots are other dermatological conditions like epidermoid cysts, sebaceous hyperplasia, milium cysts and basal cell carcinoma. Fordyce Spots are benign spots and are present at birth but until puberty, they are not noticeable. The spots get enlarged due to hormonal changes and they are not a part of the anatomy.

Diagnosis of Fordyce Spots is done by the doctor by performing a biopsy. A sample of tissue is removed from the affected area and examined under the microscope.

Fordyce Spots generally do not need any treatment. However for cosmetic reasons they can be removed, for which remedies are available. Laser treatments, micro-punch surgery, topical treatments and chemical cauterization are some of the treatment options for Fordyce Spots.