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What is a cyst?

By Anonymous March 7, 2009 - 9:42am
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I have had a very uncomfortable 'zit' on my back for several months now. It comes and goes but it is directly on my spine and hurts horribly when it is infected. Does this need to be removed or should I consistently 'pop it'?


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Miscortes, the Mayo Clinic has a great page on epidermal (sebaceous) cysts, which includes information on symptoms, causes, complications and treatments.

They suggest seeking treatment when a cyst "grows rapidly, ruptures, becomes painful or occurs in a spot that's constantly irritated." It sounds like yours qualifies in a couple of those areas.

A doctor can inject steroids or antibiotics into the cyst, or can excise the cyst if needed. It's a small procedure done in the doctor's office. Since yours is right on the spine and is probably constantly irritated from your clothing and from bumping up against things, you may benefit from looking into this.

Here's that page:


Hope you can get this resolved soon. It sounds like it's a nuisance besides being painful.

March 11, 2009 - 8:22am
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