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What Are Cholesterol Deposits—and How Can You Remove Them?

Cholesterol Deposits

As you age, the body goes through many changes. Some of them are harmless, or so small that you don’t even notice. Others are more obvious, and sometimes harmful. If you’ve ever noticed the appearance of yellowish bumps or patches on your face, typically around your eyes, you’re experiencing xanthelasma. Xanthelasma, which refers to the formation of cholesterol deposits, could indicate serious problems with your health, but the appearance of xanthelasma does not necessarily spell doom and gloom. Read on to learn more about those pesky yellow patches, including what they could mean, and how to get rid of them.

Currently, it is believed that xanthelasma appears as a result of cell damage. Specifically, when cells within the capillaries get disconnected from one another, the cholesterol found in the area can leak from the blood and end up being deposited into the skin, which results in the obvious, unsightly yellow patches that mark the condition. Since the appearance is caused simply by a leak of cholesterol, even people without problems related to poor cholesterol health can develop xanthelasma. If it does appear, what is important is to look for other heart problem indicators, including things like family history, weight, etc.

While anyone can potentially develop xanthelasma, generally there is a likelihood of cholesterol or lipid related issues associated with it. This is why it is important to check for other potential factors. High cholesterol is associated with high blood pressure (hypertension) diabetes, both of which can lead to heart trouble. In fact, high cholesterol can cause blood clots and blockages in the veins, causing a heart attack or stroke. It’s important to minimize LDL cholesterol (the “bad” kind). Remember, the presence of xanthelasma doesn’t mean one has high cholesterol, just like the absence doesn’t mean a lack of high cholesterol.

Regardless of any health problems, or the lack of them, xanthelasma itself does not cause harm to the body. However, such patches can be an unsightly eyesore. Controlling your cholesterol levels can certainly help resolve the presence of xanthelasma, but the studies on such indicate that this is a long process- we’re talking years. Who’s got time for that? Nobody. Fortunately, if you suffer from xanthelasma, you have other removal options available to you that do not take quite so much time. Talk to a medical professional about the following options. Though keep in mind the xanthelasma will likely return.

Laser

surgical laser

It seems that lasers can do anything these days. When it comes to removing xanthelasma, the laser is used to destroy the cholesterol deposits one layer at a time until all of it has been removed. This will give the skin time to heal naturally without the presence of messy cholesterol pockets. If you are interested in going with the laser option, however, you should keep in mind that there is a potential for scarring. Additionally, it can take some time to heal from the treatment. The primary advantage of the laser over other methods is its speed and efficiency.

Surgery

surgery

While the laser is quick, there are some deposits it may not be able to trim down. If you have significantly large or thick cholesterol deposits, you may want to consider surgery. Generally, invasive procedures are less popular than other options, and it’s easy to see why. Surgery could end up leaving scars, and it might alter your eyelids as well. This is because of the way the wounds heal; flesh is pulled together, and it may fuse in a way that is awkward or distorted compared to the original shape. That being said, surgery’s healing time is much quicker.