Epidermoid cysts are small lesions that appear on the skin on places like face, neck and even on your genitals. These cyst are harmless and do not require any treatment except for cosmetic reasons. In case it poses an ugly look on your face, you can remove it surgically. Whatever be the size of epidermoid cyst they are benign (non cancerous) without having to bother about your health.
Epidermoid cyst can be felt by fingers and they are round shaped yellowish colored bumps. Sometimes it may appear in red color for dark complexioned people. The size of the cyst varies from ¼ inches to 2 inches in diameter. It is grown on any part of the body like face, neck, and even fingernails.
The cyst has a central groove through which it has originally developed but later the hole gets closed by small blackhead. It is easy to squeeze out the pus inside the cyst to heal it but there is every chance of getting infected and spread to other parts.
In case the epidermoid cyst becomes infectious there will be foul smell from the cyst and discharge of thick yellowish liquid. The cyst will be red and look swollen. It would be tender to touch. You need to consult your doctor if there is quick development of the cyst in many parts of the body and if the cyst becomes painful, rupturing to discharge yellowish liquid.
Epidermoid Cyst Causes :
- Epidermis is the outermost layer of the skin which acts as a protective shield to the body guarding it against extreme temperature. Sometimes, the dead cells of the skin instead of shedding (exfoliation) enter deep into the skin to multiply. Due to the continuous block of the dead cells, the new healthy cells cannot grow normally getting clogged up. This grows in the form of epidermoid cyst in areas like face and neck. These regions have small hair follicles but large oil glands support.
- The yellowish liquid is nothing but the keratin pigment lying inside the cyst.
- This type of proliferation of skin cells can occur due to several reasons. If the hair follicles are damaged it affects the epidermis layer of the skin causing cyst. Sometimes hair follicles got damaged due to trauma or injury or due to surgical wounds.
- Epidermoid cyst can develop when the sebaceous gland gets ruptured. Sebaceous glands are glands found on the skin secreting oily substance called sebum which is responsible for lubricating the skin. Acne can rupture the sebaceous gland giving rise to the growth of cyst.
- In some cases, epidermoid cyst appears on the fetus as a developmental defect. This occurs when the stem cells get trapped inside giving way to other tissues.
- Individuals with Gardner’s syndrome may have epidermoid cyst by birth.
Who Is At Risk ?
Epidermoid cyst can occur to anyone anytime. If you have a history of acne you have more chance for getting e. cyst. When compared with women, men have greater chance to develop cyst. This cyst can occur on people who have maximum sun exposure.
In severe cases, the cyst becomes swollen and tender and becomes difficult to remove and operate. A ruptured cyst should be treated promptly since it may spread to other parts. If epidermoid cyst occurs on genitals it may be very painful during intercourse.
Your doctor can easily detect the cyst by physical examination.
Pictures of Epidermoid Cyst :
Images, Pics, Pictures and Photos of Epidermoid Cyst
- As said earlier, it does not pose any health hazard and may not require any treatment. However for cosmetic reasons, it has to be removed. For some cases, if the cyst ruptures it has to be surgically removed to prevent further spreading.
- Cyst will be removed by giving corticosteroid injection or Kenalog injection to reduce inflammation. Your doctor will make a small incision on the area and remove the pus inside. The entire cyst is removed by scalpel to prevent it recurrence. Excision is the process of removing the cyst from the root.
- First the area will be treated for inflammation with steroids. Next the incision will be done to drain out the pus. Finally the cyst is removed by excision after 6 weeks. The sutures made during excision will be removed after a week or two.
- Of late, laser technique is used for removing the epidermoid cyst for minimal scar.
You can’t stop or prevent epidermoid cyst from occurring. However you can stay away from sunlight to prevent infection and scarring.