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Clin Ophthalmol. 2014 Sep 18;8:1869-75. doi: 10.2147/OPTH.S69804. eCollection 2014.

Differentiation between chalazion and sebaceous carcinoma by noninvasive meibography.

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Department of Ophthalmology, Teikyo University School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan.
Itoh Clinic, Saitama, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan ; Department of Ophthalmology, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan.
Department of Pathology, Teikyo University School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan.



Sebaceous carcinoma is notorious for masquerading clinically as other benign lesions such as chalazion. A tool to better differentiate between these two conditions would thus be desirable.


To examine the potential application of noninvasive meibography in the differential diagnosis of chalazion and sebaceous carcinoma of the eyelid as a retrospective cross-sectional study.


Five individuals with chalazion and three patients with sebaceous carcinoma were observed. Noninvasive meibography was performed to visualize the reflectivity and shape of the lesion in each subject.


Noninvasive meibographic imaging revealed chalazion as a lesion of overall low reflectivity with small regions of higher reflectivity corresponding to lipid granules. On the other hand, the noninvasive meibography revealed sebaceous carcinoma as a poorly marginated lesion of high reflectivity in the eyelid.


Noninvasive meibographic imaging may prove useful for the differential diagnosis of chalazion and sebaceous carcinoma. It may also be informative in definition of the resection area in carcinoma patients.


chalazion; eyelid; noninvasive meibography; sebaceous carcinoma

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