DermNet NZ

Facts about the skin from DermNet New Zealand Trust. Topic index: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Fibrous papule of the nose

What is a fibrous papule?

A fibrous papule is a firm bump that most often occurs on the nose. It is very common. The fibrous papule has a characteristic appearance under the microscope.

Clinical features

A fibrous papule develops during late adolescence or early adult life on the nose, or less often, elsewhere on the face. It is a dome shaped shiny lesion 2-6 mm in diameter, sometimes bearing a central hair. Although it looks similar to a skin-coloured mole (dermal naevus), it is more firm in texture. It is harmless but persists unchanged lifelong.

It is important to distinguish fibrous papule from the common skin cancer, basal cell carcinoma, which may also present as a firm shiny bump. Basal cell carcinoma most often arises later in life. It slowly grows, and tends to bleed and ulcerate.

Fibrous papule of the nose Fibrous papule of the nose Fibrous papule of the nose
Fibrous papule of the nose

How is it diagnosed?

Fibrous papule is diagnosed by skin biopsy. There are distinctive features on histopathology (proliferation of fibroblasts, fibrotic stroma, and dilated blood vessels).

What is the cause?

Fibrous papule is considered a naevus, and develops spontaneously as part of human development. The precise reason is unknown.

How is it treated?

Fibrous papule dose not require any treatment. If desired it may be removed by a minor surgical procedure (excision biopsy, shave biopsy or electrosurgery).

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Author: Dr Amanda Oakley, Dermatologist, Hamilton, New Zealand.

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If you have any concerns with your skin or its treatment, see a dermatologist for advice.