What is a pilar cyst?
A pilosebaceous cyst, also known as a “pilar cyst,” is a type of cyst that grows on the scalp. It is filled with keratin, a protein found in hair and skin. Pilar cysts are typically round and firm, and they are usually harmless.
Why do pilar cysts grow?
Pilar cysts grow from hair follicles and are thought to be caused by a build-up of keratin inside the follicle. This can be due to a variety of factors, such as genetics, hormonal changes, and hair damage. They are not cancerous and do not pose a threat to one’s health.
How can you remove pilar cysts?
Pilar cysts can be removed through a simple surgical procedure known as cyst excision. This procedure is usually performed by a doctor or plastic surgeon and involves numbing the area around the cyst, making a small incision, and removing the cyst. The incision is then closed with sutures or skin adhesive. The procedure is usually done on an outpatient basis and takes only a few minutes.
In some cases, the doctor may choose to drain the cyst and prescribe antibiotics if it is infected. After the procedure, it is common to experience some swelling and discomfort, but these symptoms usually resolve within a few days.
What happens if you do not remove pilar cysts?
If left untreated, pilar cysts can continue to grow and become larger over time. In some cases, they can become uncomfortable or painful. Pilar cysts can also become infected, leading to redness, pain, and discharge.
In rare cases, pilar cysts can become cancerous, so it’s important to have any cyst that is changing in appearance or causing symptoms evaluated by a doctor. However, most pilar cysts are benign and do not pose a serious threat to one’s health if left untreated.
Are pilar cysts inherited?
There is a genetic component to the development of pilar cysts, and they tend to run in families. People with a family history of pilar cysts are more likely to develop them. However, not everyone who has a family history of pilar cysts will necessarily develop them. Other factors, such as hormonal changes and hair damage, can also contribute to the development of pilar cysts.