A nevus (a benign tumor) is commonly found on the skin of other parts of the human body. A nevus can also occur on the eyelid skin. These tumors are usually pigmented and have thickness.
Patients typically notice a dark spot on their eyelid that is thickened. It usually does not cause loss of eyelashes and though it can grow, most do not. When rapid (over months) growth, loss of eyelashes or discoloration of the nevus is noted, malignant melanoma is suspected.
Most eyelid nevi can be diagnosed by clinical examination. A baseline photograph should be obtained for comparison with future examinations. Very suspicious or rapidly growing eyelid nevi should be biopsied to rule out melanoma. It is important to note that eyelid nevi can slowly grow, and that change is particularly common during puberty.
Eyelid nevi are benign tumors. They can be photographed and followed for evidence of change or growth prior to consideration of biopsy or treatment. Large eyelid nevi can be a cosmetic problem that can be repaired by ophthalmic plastic surgery.
The benign eyelid tumor hydrocystoma comes from the Latin hydro, meaning fluid, and cystoma, meaning cyst or sac.
A hydrocystic thickening is an epithelial-lined serous cyst (within the skin or soft tissues). Sometimes it looks like they are translucent.
Hydrocystomas most commonly occur on the eyelids. They typically are the same color as eyelid skin, rounded and soft to the touch. They are slow growing, may cause misdirection but not loss of eyelashes.
Hydrocystoma is a benign tumor that can be photographed and followed for evidence of growth. High-frequency ultrasound can demonstrate that the tumor is filled with fluid and confirm the diagnosis.
Excision is typically performed if growth is documented, basal cell or other eyelid cancer is suspected and for cosmetic reasons. During removal, your surgeon will try and keep the cyst intact. Removing the whole tumor will help keep it from recurring.
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