Cysts, Lumps, Bumps, and Your Skin
How Are Dermatofibromas Treated?
In most cases, there is no need to treat dermatofibromas. However, the growths can be removed surgically or can be flattened by being frozen with liquid nitrogen.
Epidermoid Cysts and Your Skin
Epidermoid cysts, also called sebaceous cysts, are benign (non-cancerous) skin cysts formed by an outpouching from the hair follicle. Most commonly, epidermoid cysts are found on the genitals, chest, and back; but, they also can occur in other areas of the skin.
What Are the Symptoms of Epidermoid Cysts?
In general, epidermoid cysts have a round appearance. A dark portion of the cyst is visible on the skin. If the cysts become infected, they will become red and tender. When the cysts are squeezed, they can produce a cheesy white discharge.
How Are Epidermoid Cysts Treated?
The effective treatment of epidermoid cysts requires that the sac of the cyst be completely removed. If the cyst is squeezed and the discharge is forced out without removing the sac, the cyst will return. Usually, a doctor will be able to remove the cyst by making only a small incision in the skin. Antibiotics may be prescribed to treat infected cysts.
Folliculitis and Your Skin
Folliculitis is an inflammation of the hair follicles. It can be caused by an infection in the hair follicles, by chemical irritation or by physical irritation (for example, shaving or friction from clothing). Typical body sites that are involved in folliculitis include the face, thighs, and scalp.
Folliculitis is more common in people who have diabetes. It also is more common in people who are obese or have compromised immune systems.
What Are the Symptoms of Folliculitis?
The main lesion in folliculitis is a papule or pustule with a central hair. The hair shaft in the middle of the lesion may not be seen.
Other signs and symptoms include:
- Multiple red pimples and/or pustules on hair-bearing areas of the body
- Itching skin
How Is Folliculitis Treated?
Topical antibiotics, oral antibiotics, or antifungal drugs may be used to treat infections associated with folliculitis, depending on the underlying cause. Treatment also involves preventing further damage to the hair follicles. Steps that can help achieve this goal include:
- Minimizing friction from clothing
- Not shaving in the affected area, if possible. If shaving is necessary, use a clean new razor blade or an electric razor each time.
- Keeping the area clean
Keratoacanthoma and Your Skin
A keratoancanthoma occurs when cells in a hair follicle do not grow normally. The growth may be triggered by a minor skin injury in an area that previously had suffered sun damage. Ultraviolet radiation from sun exposure is the biggest risk factor in keratoacanthomas.
A keratoacanthoma usually will appear on sun-damaged skin as a thick growth that has a central crusted plug.
Keratoacanthomas appear most often in people who are over the age of 60 and they are considered a low-grade skin cancer.