Last Modified on Jun 12, 2014
A seborrheic keratosis (also known as "Seborrheic verruca," "Senile keratosis," and "Senile wart" is a noncancerous benign skin growth that originates in keratinocytes. Like liver spots, seborrheic keratoses are seen more often as people age. In fact they are sometimes humorously referred to as the "barnacles of old age".
[YEA] 04/16/2014: Mark from Chicago: "Apple Cider Vinegar got rid of my seborrheic keratosis. I took a cotton ball and dipped it in ACV then taped it to my arm for 2 hours about 5 times per week. Within 4 weeks it was half the size it used to be. Within 8 weeks it was completely gone. It's been over 3 months and it's still completely gone!"
01/11/2013: Melanie from Louisville, Ky: "Seborrheic Keratosis natural cure: I got rid of this pea sized scailey spot on my face by using a cotton swab dipped in apple cider vinegar and dabbing it on the spot for only a couple of minutes each time. I have done this only 3 times (3 nights in a row) and it's nearly gone! In the morning I use antibiotic cream to calm the redness and this ugly thing is going away. I had it frozen off several years ago but it came back. Try the apple cider vinegar, I promise you it will work. It stings only slightly but keep at it, it will scab over and shrink away in less than a week!"Replies
03/16/2013: Juan from Tampa, Florida replies: "Melanie, I sure looking forward to trying the Apple Cider Vinegar. I had Seborrheic Keratosis for years, I never thought of removing them, until a 5 year girl told me I am ugly with those spots on my skin. So embarrassed!!"
06/28/2011: Erin from Tampa, Fl Usa: "I read on a message board that some other people had great success using ACV on their lesions. They used full strength ACV soaked into a cotton ball and held onto the lesions with bandaids, and said that their lesions fell off in two days. I tried it myself using ACV with the mother still in it. My lesions flattened out considerably, and both scabbed and partially fell off in three days, but the entire lesion didn't fall off on either site. A second treatment might finish the job. One thing to be aware of if you try this is that you have to be highly tolerant of the smell of vinegar, because it will not dissipate when it's held onto your skin in this way."Replies
07/18/2012: Jackie from Winnipeg, Mb, Canada replies: "Any thoughts on whether it needs to be Apple Cider Vinegar specifically or would any vinegar do the trick?"
03/28/2013: Andrea from Portland, Me replies: "This is an old post but just in case someone else is reading... I am assuming it needs to be unfiltered ACV with "the mother" and not just any regular vinegar. The mother contains all kinds of beneficial microbes."
08/20/2013: Paramuschick from Paramus, Nj replies: "You mention that we shouldn't buy just normal apple cider vinegar but it needs to be the "mother". Not sure where to buy that. I have a seborrheic keratosis that all of a sudden appeared on my cheek and I hate it. I want to try this. Thanks in advance for your reply."
08/21/2013: Steve from Dublin, Ireland replies: "Hi, I get mine in the local Health store, if you can't get it with the Mother just use the normal ACV as the acid in it will work, but AVC with the Mother is best. Good luck."
09/13/2013: Duke from Pa replies: "The "mother" is something that naturally occurs in real apple cider vinegar. You do not have to look for it specifically."
10/15/2013: 262lisal from Wi replies: "The Mother is the bacterial culture that allows the vinegar to form. It is also the source of the wonderful nutritional benefits and the fungus killing properties of ACV. Look for Apple Cider Vinegar at most grocery stores. The vinegar you use should be unpasteurized and unfiltered."
[YEA] 01/24/2014: Kelli from Alabama: "I'm a 43 yr old female and had a seborrheic keratosis on the left side of my face on my jaw for years. It seemed like it was starting to get larger (about 1/4" - 3/8") so I asked my doc about it. She said there were no home remedies and it would have to be cut off. I read online about the apple cider vinegar, tried it and didn't get any results. Then one day I was watching Dr. Oz and he talked about a home remedy for warts so I decided to try it. It worked! He said all ya had to do was to cover it with something so the air couldn't get to it, like tape or a bandaid. Every morning, I cut the pad off a bandaid and covered my SK with one of the sticky pieces and left it there all day until bedtime, then repeated the next day. I've been doing this for about 6 weeks now and it's practically gone! I noticed a difference after just a couple of days; it felt smooth rather than bumpy. I wish I'd taken pics! Forget all the concoctions; try a plain ol' bandaid! Good luck and I hope you have the same results as I did."Replies
06/01/2014: Florida Girl from Naples, Fl replies: "I also tried peroxide then apple cider vinegar and also tea tree oil. Nothing worked. I will try the Bandaid during the night as I have plenty of these little warts all over my face. I cannot go to work with my face covered with Bandaids."
06/28/2013: Susan from Amherst, Nh: "My dermatologist said that seborrheic keratosis is caused by sun damage suffered in earlier years. You don't have to burn to be subject to it, especially with multiple years of exposure. She said as earth's ozone layer becomes thinner (because of pollution), that the rate of pre- and non-cancerous growths has increased dramatically, and that it's best not to avoid the sun and outdoor activities all together, but to always wear hats, sunglasses, and full body covering when outside, even on overcast days. Ten minutes a day of sun exposure is all we need to meet Vitamin D requirements."Replies
06/28/2013: Tasha from Canada replies: "I disagree... I'm am as pale as the driven snow and stay out of the sun because I burn if I don't. And I have it. I did not sun bathe or sun bed ever."
08/01/2013: Linda from Tempe, Az replies: "My dermatologist told me that my seborrheic keratosis is inherited (both my parents had it), and it does not turn into cancer. My dermatologist also said that I have no sun damage to my skin on either my face or body."
08/12/2013: Susan from Boston, Ma replies: "My dermatologist told me these nasty things are inherited. My Dad had them. They are flat and scaly and I have them on my stomach (I don't have a 'bikini body' so the sun never touched this area! ). I'm going to try the ACV treatment. Thanks for this information."
02/07/2014: Sue J from Western Australia replies: "Seborrheic Keratosis is more of an age thing due to an icrease in the body's production of keratin. Solar Keratosis is a result of sun damage."
07/27/2011: Florie from San Francisco, California: "Very interesting forum on Seborrheic Keratosis here: http://www.essentialdayspa.com/forum/viewthread.php?tid=30365&postdays=0&postorder=asc&&start=0"Replies
02/12/2012: Karen from Roscommon, Mi replies: "Thank you Florie for this link. I checked this forum out and it is full of information from real people who have tried all kinds of self help therapies, including hydrogen peroxide and apple cidar vinegar.. People have taken the time to document their experience and many of them have had great success! Well worth reading through the thread, which started in 2008 and is still going today."
11/23/2012: Rania from Cornwall, England: "Hi, thank you so much for your answer to my last post I am so grateful for any help I can get. However my keratosis is not the same as yours and I wonder whether I can still use the same treatment. To my knowledge I have never had scabies so I cant trace my problem back to that so I am stumped. I do know that the first one came when I was in my thirties and was very slow at first. Now I am in my seventies and they are spreading and getting very thick and crusty. I am at my wits end. Anybody out there got the same problem? can we help each other to research?"
01/16/2012: Lalainlalaland from Los Angeles, Ca, Usa: "Does anyone know the CAUSE of this skin affliction? It caused benign skin growths. I suddenly realized I had a TON of these on my back-- and while it is not dangerous-- it looks awful.
I have seen on this site that you can treat each spot with either ACV or Hydrogen Peroxide but since they are on my back and I have so many that is not practical.
I am on a mission to find the CAUSE so that I can treat my body as a whole... I am wondering if it might be related to candida or a fungus!??
Any feedback would be so appreciated as I am too young to have to hide my back!!
Thanks so much!!"Replies
09/09/2013: Douggy from Dar-es-salaam replies: "Hi Lailainlalaland, if it's just one or two.. Or even three, it's okay to treat just topically with ACV with the 'mother', or with H2O2 maybe 30%, and intensive moisturizing ofcourse, plus, knowing your allergens to keep away from them! But when it's that many, on your back, I think I'd say it's safe to see a GIT specialist as this may be a sign of something. The fewer ones are safe to treat topically, but also to prevent more from occuring, I'd suggest intensive 'for-life' moisturizing with stuff like Glycolic acid, yes, or Urea 20% with 3% Salicylic acid (keratolytic) or with just some good Coconut body butter. Look for something your dry hungry skin can feast on after you expose it to aggressive acids! For sure you also need to identify foods you're allergic to and stop eating them, eg. people with Celiac disease, most don't know they are allergic to Gluten protein, they eat wheat etc all the time, and they use cosmetic products with wheat all the time. If such have Keratosis pilaris or this Seborrheic keratosis, they should stop gluten as one way to treat their skin, and do the topical stuff. But dont do just the topical stuff and not check that what you eat is good for you. Even add some Multivits if you have to. But again, if you have many on your back, just see a doctor. Google Leser-Trelat Sign (rapid onset of multiple seborrheic keratoses). My friend is gluten-intolerant, and has had KP and one SK lesion at various parts of her body mostly exposed to sun since young age (she wouldn't get an SK bump on medial parts of her limbs or parts usually covered from sun exposure). I dont know why they call it senile. Maybe for seniors it doesn't matter whether you're in the sun or not, if you inherited it, you get it. My friend is a doctor, so that's where I got all this stuff from. Thanks also for this thread guys, I'll tell her about this thread. It's good stuff here. Good luck every1."
06/11/2014: Lisa from Australia replies: "I have developed quite a few of these ugly skin monsters over the past year. They start out as very large dark patches and then they gradually become like a wart underneath. I have two on my arms and a concentration of them on the front inside and outside of my upper thighs. I heard that having them in that location is linked to female reproductive health problems, which I have. It is also interesting to now read they are linked to Gluten intolerance as I have recently developed this and lactose intolerance and have been put on what they call a low fodmap diet. I hope it prevents future growths."
07/10/2009: Karen from Gloucester, England: "Dear all, I wonder if anyone has any remedies for the unpleasant skin problem called seborrheic keratoses, sometimes known as barnacles on the skin? The medical profession treats it as an unsightly problem, but has not proved to be very helpful as some medical treatments would leave scars. Would it be possible to create a new page for this item?"Replies
09/26/2009: Steve from Hamilton, Oh replies: "I too would like to hear of any remedies for Seborrheic keratosis. I have noticed these small moles appearing on my face the last couple of years and I feel very self conscious about them. I have seen Dr's and they can remove them but there will be scars. I would prefer not to have these scars on my face. Does anyone have a cure for this?"
09/26/2009: Luis from Cali, Colombia replies: "Hi Steve:
Yes, H202 35% Food Grade. Take a pin, get a very small drip on the point, and apply directly and only in the keratosis spot. Be careful because you don't want to burn healthy skin. Pay attention, my experience is about seborrheic keratosis, no actinic keratosis, and HP is 35%, not 3%.
To your best days.
12/02/2009: Michael from Chicago, Il replies: "I have this seborrheic Keratosis condition as well and have been looking for a way to get rid of these small moles. How often do you need to put the 35% HP on the keratosis? Thanks"
[YEA] 08/04/2011: Teri In T Town from Tacoma, Wa, Usa replies: "I have used Apple Cider Vinegar with great success. I simply apply it with a Q-tip twice a day and let it dry. Some peel off in two days, some take longer. It leaves pink skin behind that heals pretty quickly. Good luck"