If red or black bleeding spots suddenly appear on your hands, face, or neck, do not panic. They aren’t infectious, and they aren’t cancer, either. They are a relatively common skin disorder that can easily be treated at home. However, it is best to get a professional diagnosis before proceeding with treatment.
Pyogenic granuloma, also called lobular capillary hemangioma, is a benign disorder of the vasculature of the skin. The most common manifestation of pyogenic granuloma, found in children and young adults, is a solitary red nodule that appears on the hands, face, neck, or upper trunk. Some people develop several lesions located near each other. The lesions grow rapidly after appearance, to reach their full size in a matter of weeks, after which they stop growing. The average diameter is 6.5 mm, but cases of lesions as large as 25 cm have been reported. A variant of the condition that often affects pregnant women occurs in the tissues lining the mouth. In some rare cases, multiple lesions can appear all over the hands, arms, and trunk. The lesions easily break open and bleed, and therefore, can turn into black, crusty ulcerated lesions.
Other than lesions that develop during pregnancy, the cause of pyogenic granuloma is unclear. Many lesions seem to occur at the sites of prior trauma. Some experts speculate that trauma stimulates an abnormal angiogenesis pathway, inducing the production of large numbers of abnormal capillaries at the site. Some patients being treated with anti-cancer or antiviral drugs develop pyogenic granulomas.
Who Gets Them?
These lesions are most common in children around the age of six, and in adults in their 20s. They affect around 0.5% of pregnancies. However, they may arise in individuals of any age.
Once they have reached their full size, the lesions stop growing. They do not cause any other health problems. However, they can be unsightly, and their predilection for spontaneous bleeding can significantly impair quality of life. If left untreated, eventually, after 8 to 12 months, they will regress and shrink. However, they often recur at the same or a nearby site.
The most effective home remedy is silver nitrate. Silver nitrate is a natural compound commonly use to fight infections. Silver nitrate sticks or creams can be purchased online or at many health food stores. If using a stick, gently press the stick against the lesion for 1 to 2 minutes every other day. If using cream, apply cream to the site daily. The lesion will immediately turn black and start to slowly slough off. It may ooze significantly and bleed during this process, but after about 2 weeks it should be completely gone.
Some people have found that applying apple cider vinegar or garlic to the lesion is quite effective. If using apple cider vinegar, apply a soaked cloth to the area for 20 minutes per day. If using garlic, cut a small slice of garlic and use a bandage to hold the garlic to the lesion overnight, every night, until the lesion regresses. Alternatively, flaxseed mixed with honey can be substituted for the garlic.
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