Milium (dermatology)

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Milia big.png
Milia on the eyelid of an adult male
SpecialtyDermatology Edit this on Wikidata
Relative incidence of cutaneous cysts. Milia is labeled at bottom right.

A milium (plural milia), also called a milk spot or an oil seed,[citation needed] is a clog of the eccrine sweat gland. It is a keratin-filled cyst that can appear just under the epidermis or on the roof of the mouth.[1][2]: 780  Milia are commonly associated with newborn babies, but can appear on people of all ages.[3]: 680  They are usually found around the nose and eyes, and sometimes on the genitalia, often mistaken by those affected as warts or other sexually transmitted diseases. Milia can also be confused with stubborn whiteheads.

In children, milia often disappear within two to four weeks. For adults, they can be removed by a physician (a dermatologist has specialist knowledge in this area). A common method that a dermatologist uses to remove a milium is to nick the skin with a #11 surgical blade and then use a comedone extractor to press the cyst out.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "milium" at Dorland's Medical Dictionary
  2. ^ Freedberg, et al. (2003). Fitzpatrick's Dermatology in General Medicine. (6th ed.). McGraw-Hill. ISBN 0-07-138076-0.
  3. ^ James, William D.; Berger, Timothy G.; et al. (2006). Andrews' Diseases of the Skin: Clinical Dermatology. Saunders Elsevier. ISBN 0-7216-2921-0.
  4. ^ Burnett, Mark E.; Levitt, Jacob O. (2015). "Incision and Drainage (Abscesses, Acne, and Milia)". In Levitt, J.; Sobak, J. (eds.). Safety in Office-Based Dermatologic Surgery. Switzerland: Spring, Cham. pp. 119–128. doi:10.1007/978-3-319-13347-8_13.