Solar Elastosis

Solar elastosis is caused by chronic UV exposure. A yellowish honeycomb pattern is common, especially on the forehead. A histologic study showed increased elastosis in patients who smoked compared to those who did not [JAAD 1999;41;23].

The cause is abnormal and increased elastic fibers.   One study showed that the presence of solar elastosis was protective for the development of BCC.


Nearly confluent yellow discoloration of the skin of the forehead, scalp and/or cheeks is typical. Fair-skinned older patients with years of chronic sun exposure are preferentially affected. Areas absent the yellowish color correspond to hair follicles. Nodules may develop--so called nodular elastosis (see picture below).


Sun protection to prevent further skin damage is needed. Smokers should quit. Topical tretinoin can improve the appearance of the skin. See photodamage.

Additional Photos

Solar Elastosis

Rarely, larger nodules of elastosis may form.
Nodular Elastosis Nodular Elastosis

Nodular Elastosis

A solitary elastoma of the upper lip.
A solitary elastoma of the upper lip


Homepage | FAQs | Contact Dr. White

It is not the intention of to provide specific medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. only intends to provide users with information regarding various medical conditions for educational purposes and will not provide specific medical advice. Information on is not intended as a substitute for seeking medical treatment and you should always seek the advice of a qualified healthcare provider for diagnosis and for answers to your individual questions. Information contained on should never cause you to disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking treatment. If you live in the United States and believe you are having a medical emergency call 911 immediately.