Pilonidal disease affects 70,000 people every year, causing a painful cyst or abscess at the top of their buttocks crease. When pilonidal disease causes an infection, board-certified general surgeon Dina Madni, MD, performs a procedure to treat the infection, promote healing, and lower your risk of recurrent problems. To learn more about pilonidal disease or to schedule an appointment to get rid of the problem, call the office in Dallas, Texas, or use the online booking tool today.
Pilonidal disease is a skin infection that occurs right above your buttocks crease. The problem develops when a hair becomes embedded under the skin. Then the tissues surrounding the hair become inflamed and infected.
You may develop pilonidal disease when a hair follicle gets irritated or blocked. For example, activities that impact the buttocks area like cycling and horseback riding may affect the follicle.
You could also end up with the problem when a coarse external hair pokes into the skin. Then a cyst forms around the hair, and it can develop an infection.
Pilonidal disease can develop into a cyst, abscess, and/or sinus:
A cyst develops when skin surrounds the hair and creates a sac-like structure. Pilonidal cysts may or may not become infected.
You have an abscess when the area develops an infection and pus collects in the tissues.
A sinus is a furrow or tunnel that develops where the abscess was located. Having a sinus increases your risk of recurrent infections.
The earliest sign is often a small pit at the top of your buttock crease. As the problem develops, you have symptoms such as:
If you have an infection, the drainage may have a foul odor. Severe infections can also cause fever and nausea.
Once you have an infection, you need to take antibiotics and have an operation called incision and drainage. During this procedure, Dr. Madni removes the infected fluids and tissues underneath your skin.
After your acute infection clears up, your treatment focuses on preventing future ingrown hairs and infections. You will have a second surgery to remove the ingrown hairs and cyst and to repair a sinus if one appears.
To help prevent future infections, you need to keep the area clean and free of hair, at least until the age of 30. By then, the hairs are less likely to get embedded as they soften and thin out.
To get relief from an acute bout of pilonidal disease, call Dina Madni, MD, or schedule an appointment online today.