What is a sebaceous cyst?
Let’s explore, what is a sebaceous cyst?
Sebaceous cysts, small non-cancerous lumps that usually form on the face, neck, or trunk, are filled with a thick, yellowish substance called sebum that is produced by sebaceous glands in the skin.
While both types of skin cysts, an epidermoid cyst and a sebaceous cyst, are usually small, painless, and non-cancerous, there is a difference between them. An epidermoid cyst originates from the cells lining the surface of the skin and is filled with a cheese-like substance. Conversely, a sebaceous cyst originates from sebaceous glands and is filled with sebum.
It is advisable to consult a dermatologist to confirm the diagnosis and determine the most appropriate treatment plan for any growths on your skin.
How do you remove sebaceous cysts?
Sebaceous cysts can be removed through a medical procedure, typically performed by a dermatologist or a surgeon. The most common methods for removing sebaceous cysts are:
- Surgical excision: This involves cutting out the entire cyst and surrounding tissue and closing the wound with stitches. At Lipomacyst.com we offer surgical removal of sebaceous cysts with minimal scarring and damage to surrounding tissue.
- Drainage: This involves making a small incision in the cyst and draining the contents. The cyst may need to be drained multiple times before it goes away completely.
- Electrosurgery or curettage: This involves using an electrified instrument or a scraping tool to remove the cyst.
In some cases, a sebaceous cyst may not require removal if it is not causing any symptoms or problems. The choice of treatment will depend on the size, location, and symptoms of the cyst, as well as the patient’s overall health.
How to prevent sebaceous cysts from forming?
To help reduce the risk of developing sebaceous cysts, you can:
- Keep skin clean and dry to prevent infections that can lead to cyst formation.
- Avoid skin trauma by not squeezing or popping pimples, which can damage hair follicles and sebaceous glands and increase the risk of cysts.
- Eat a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains to keep the skin healthy and lower the risk of cyst formation.
- Manage stress, which can weaken the immune system and increase the risk of skin problems, including cysts.
- Practice good skin care by regularly moisturizing the skin and avoiding harsh, drying skin care products to lower the risk of cysts.
It is crucial to understand that genetics and hormonal changes are often the cause of sebaceous cysts, and not all cysts can be prevented. If you have a history of cysts or are worried about developing them, it is advisable to speak with a dermatologist.
How do you treat infected sebaceous cysts?
Infected sebaceous cysts require medical treatment to clear the infection and prevent complications. Treatment options include:
- Antibiotics: A course of oral antibiotics may be prescribed to treat the infection and prevent it from spreading.
- Drainage: The infected fluid may need to be drained from the cyst, either by a healthcare provider or through a small incision made in the cyst.
- Warm compresses: Applying warm compresses to the cyst can help reduce swelling and encourage drainage.
- Pain relievers: Over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen can help relieve pain and reduce inflammation.
- Surgical removal: In severe cases, the infected cyst may need to be surgically removed.
It’s important to seek prompt medical attention if you have an infected sebaceous cyst, as untreated infections can lead to more serious complications, such as abscess formation, cellulitis, and sepsis.
What is an incision and drainage of an infected cyst?
To treat an infected abscess, medical professionals use incision and drainage (I&D). This procedure involves making a small cut in the abscess to allow pus to drain out, and then cleansing the area to remove any remaining infection.
I&D is performed in a medical facility like a doctor’s office or emergency room and uses local anesthesia to numb the area. The procedure helps relieve pain, lower the risk of further infection spread, and promote healing.
After the procedure, healthcare providers may leave the incision open to continue draining or cover it with a dressing. Antibiotics may also be prescribed to treat the underlying infection.
It is important to seek prompt medical attention if an abscess is suspected because untreated infections can lead to more severe complications such as cellulitis or sepsis.