It’s important to be informed about the causes, symptoms and possible complications of pilonidal abscesses so you know when to seek treatment. The doctors at our Los Angeles facility want all patients to know that help exists for this uncomfortable condition. Call us at 888.397.7135 to book a consultation with one of our pilonidal cyst specialists.
Learn more about abscesses and cysts by visiting Mayo Clinic’s pilonidal cyst page.
What Causes A Pilonidal Abscess?
Although there is no definitive consensus about what causes a pilonidal cyst (also known as a sacrococcygeal fistula), many doctors believe that the growth results from hair follicles in the lower back that have been pushed back into the skin around the gluteal. As these hair follicles are repeatedly forced underneath the skin, they nest and create a cyst in the lower back.
These growths vary in size. Cysts frequently become infected, leading to pilonidal abscesses that are very painful and require expert supervision to treat.
There are a number of symptoms that plague patients with pilonidal cysts. The primary and most acute symptom is pain, which is usually the result of an infected cyst. The level of pain can range from mild and annoying to debilitating, making even simple movements like walking and sitting unbearable. The growth is almost always associated with varying levels of pus build up and leakage, which have to be drained in order to treat.
Other symptoms include swelling, redness, and, in some cases, fever. These last few symptoms are not as common as those mentioned above, but do still occur. If you or someone you know has a cyst, it’s important to keep an eye on all of these symptoms and notify your doctor if they change in severity.
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As stated above, the primary complication that occurs with a sacrococcygeal fistula is infection. Infections are painful, large, pus-filled, red and unsightly. An infected cyst, often called a pilonidal abscess, is the leading reason that patients are treated for this growth.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What are the common causes of tailbone abscesses?
A: Nests of hair follicles at the top of the buttocks can cause cysts to occur. As hair follicles are embedded into the skin, they build up and create a cyst.
Q: What are the most common symptoms of an abscess?
A: Symptoms can include redness, swelling, pus, pain, and in some cases, fever.
Q: What kind of complications can occur?
A: The most common complication is infection. Once a cyst has become infected it’s referred to as a pilonidal abscess.
Q: How large can a cyst become?
A: Cysts vary in size and can be as small as a penny and as large as a tennis ball.
Contact Expert Colorectal Surgeons in Los Angeles
The team of colorectal surgeons at the Pilonidal Cyst Center specializes in treating pilonidal cysts with the utmost care. Led by Allen Kamrava, MD, our team has decades of experience helping thousands of patients with any and all colorectal problems. We pride ourselves on being one of the only centers focused entirely on the diagnosis and treatment of this painful growth. We encourage you to contact our office at 888.397.7135 to book your consultation to learn more about how we can help you get treated.
Next, learn about home remedies for sacrococcygeal fistulas.