Sebaceous Cysts: Treatments and Causes?

Medical issues can develop all over your body. Some become visible while others grow under your skin. The former becomes easy to cure, remove, and avoid in the future while the latter comes to the scene when the issue gets worse. Considering visible growing issues on your skin, sebaceous cysts come to mind. These are round domes that develop on your skin. In addition, they differ in size and the seriousness they bring. But none of them get too dangerous in causing cancerous symptoms or other serious threats. At best, it will irritate and itch you, but you can live with that for a while. Or you can get quick treatment from a reliable clinic like and avoid the above effects.

Sebaceous Cysts

Sebaceous Cysts

Due to various reasons, some can be skin infections while others can be internal ones, some dome-shaped lumps can appear on your skin. This is what we know as a sebaceous cyst. It grows under the skin initially and then comes to the scene. Moreover, they grow large and happen to be stiff causing itching, irritation, and pain while rubbing against your clothing. They are protein-filled hence coming directly from your skin and sebaceous glands in addition.

These cysts can vary in size and other small characteristics. These include protein, stiffness, and reddishness. Generally, they can grow less and reduce themselves. While if you let them remain open or stay on the skin, they can irritate. However, there is a relatively low chance that one can grow into a cancerous malignant. But with medical issues that look different, you do not need to take them lightly.

A sebaceous cyst can feel like a stiff ball that is a semi-circle. And often when you touch them with some force, you will feel your nearby skin taking the effect. This shows that their roots come from glands within your body. There is a difference between these cysts and two others.
  • Epidermoid Cysts 

Epidermoid cysts originate from your skin. This can mean they come from skin-related issues. But sebaceous ones grow from your glands within.
  • Pilar Cysts 

Pilar cysts also come partly from your skin but through the hair. Your hair follicles contribute to extending these cysts.

Symptoms Causing Sebaceous Cysts

At first, it is definitive that sebaceous cysts originate from your sebaceous glands. Thus, they can be caused through damage or stoppage in them or a pathway that allows sebum to come to the skin. The main cause for this blockage and damage is a scratch, surgical wound, or acne that develops in the area. Genetic reasons can also cause these cysts to develop on your skin. One such reason is basal cell nervous syndrome.

In addition, the primary symptom of cysts is a lump that develops under your skin. This developing lump is not painful in general, but it can grow into a stiffer one. While touching the lump, you can feel tenderness or stiffness. And thus, it can be painful for a while. The color of your lump also predicts its seriousness. Generally, at an initial scale, they are whitish-red. However, as time goes by, they turn red.

People often question their seriousness. Some consider them malignant, but this is a rarity. Very rarely you can find a case where the sebaceous cyst grows into a cancerous tumor. In addition, people also ask for their duration. These cysts can go back on their own while some require removal treatment. And without treatment, they can remain on your skin forever.


Your sebaceous cyst can grow into a large one but removing them early is the key. For this, you will need to consult a pathologist that will examine your skin and the cysts. Moreover, when a pathologist or your doctor finds the seriousness of the issue or thinks it can grow malignant, they can look for possible tests.

These include:

  • Ultrasound
  • Biopsy where some amount of tissue is taken from your cyst to check for cancer
  • CT Scan when the doctor feels there needs to be one to remove your cyst through a surgery
Treating these cysts depends on their size. Sometimes the cyst is small, and it is not growing or reducing. Then, doctors suggest leaving them, and they can go back naturally after a while. However, if your smaller cyst grows into something large, there can be an issue. Mostly, they will rub against your clothing and swell. This causes pain alongside irritation and itching. For this, your doctor can suggest removing these.

In addition, the doctor will make an incision to remove the protein from them. Once the protein is removed, there is ample chance that the cyst will not return. However, if they do return, there will be other options. 

Your doctor can use any of the following methods to treat and remove your cysts:

  • Laser-aided incision 

  • Minimal excision 

  • Conventional or wide excision  

  • Punch excision