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June 1, 2008

Eruptive Milia and Rapid Response to Topical Tretinoin

Author Affiliations

Copyright 2008 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved. Applicable FARS/DFARS Restrictions Apply to Government Use.2008

Arch Dermatol. 2008;144(6):816-817. doi:10.1001/archderm.144.6.816

Milia are small keratin-filled cysts derived from epithelial structures (hair follicles, sweat ducts, sebaceous ducts, or epidermis). Eruptive milia are characterized by the sudden appearance of multiple lesions. An 18-year-old woman presented with this condition on the upper chest, which responded rapidly to topical tretinoin cream.

The patient presented with many 1-mm yellow to white papules limited to the upper chest of 8 months’ duration (Figure 1). They had initially developed over 2 weeks. There was no family or personal history of similar lesions, nor was there history of acne, trauma, sunburn, or a preceding eryption at the site. Biopsy specimens of a lesion taken by the patient's physician showed an epidermal inclusion cyst (Figure 2). Various oral and topical antibiotics along with topical steroid creams were prescribed, but the condition did not improve.