Sebaceous horns, also known as cutaneous or keratin horns are conical protrusions from the skin, varying in size and colour, mostly appearing in fair-skin (type I and II) and elderly individuals and developing on the sun-exposed areas, such as the face, ears, forearms and back of the hands, but can also be present in other parts of the body. Affecting both men and women, the cutaneous horns seem to have a greater risk of developing malignant characteristics in the former category. Although most of the sebaceous horns are benign lesions (approx. 60%), there are such growths that can become pre-malignant and malignant (approx. 30%).
Sebaceous horns are asymptomatic lesions, except for their yellow, pink or brown appearance which is usually curved, surrounded by normal or thickened skin. These keratin horns may have a flat, protruding or crater-like base and when suffering trauma, other symptoms may appear such as inflammation, redness and pain. When repeated trauma occurs, and the abovementioned symptoms are experienced by the sebaceous horn sufferers for a longer period of time, you should see a specialist, as these may be indicators of a pre-malignant or malignant lesion. In relation to their size, sebaceous horns can range from a few millimeters to several centimeters, the largest one ever known reaching 25 cm in size. Cutaneous horns can appear as a singularity but also in clusters.
The causes of these unaesthetic sebaceous horns are not well-known, but their formation is usually associated with certain skin conditions such as seborrheic keratosis, epidermal naevus, viral warts, molluscum contagiosum, ostraceous psoriasis or hypertrophic lichen planus for the benign lesions, respectively actinic keratosis, intraepidermal carcinoma, keratoacanthoma, squamous cell carcinoma and rarely, malignant melanoma for the premalignant or malignant lesions.
Our Renew Skin & Health Clinic specialists are ready to assess and treat your skin condition in case you are suffering from sebaceous horns. Before any sebaceous or cutaneous horns removal procedure is performed, we will conduct a specialized consultation, which, if needed, will also include a biopsy to determine or eliminate any possibility of malignant characteristics of the sebaceous horn.
Depending on the severity of your skin condition, the cutaneous horns removal treatments ensured at Renew Skin & Health Clinic may be radiosurgery, minor surgery (excisional) or DEKA CO2 laser. Regardless of the sebaceous horn removal procedure, rest assured that all details are taken into account, our team is made up of specialist doctors and your recovery will be fast, with minimal to no downtime required.