Tuesday, 18 December 2012


On a video uploaded by Dr Vikram Singh Yadav, I saw many people asking that what is the difference between abscess and sebaceous cyst. So I thought that I would create this post to explain you the difference between them. Ill come directly to the point here.

Abscess Difference
An abscess is cavity filled with pus. It occurs due to an unresolvable infection or inflammation which body, macrophages to be specific, cant kill or cant get rid off. So to prevent the spreading of the infection or inflammation our body tries to wall off the inflammation. This creates a cavity which is full of neutrophills and necrotic derbies. These present as painfull red warm swellings over various areas of body or at the injury site. An abscess could accompany with fever, lethargy and other constitutional symptoms.

Treatment of abscess is incision and drainage, betadine packing, noninflammatory drugs and antibiotics.

Cebaceous Cyst Removed
Sebaceous cyst is formed due to blocked sebaceous gland or oil gland. In prolonged blockage of gland duct the secretion from the gland accumulates leading to a swollen glands. These cysts present as small swelling with small dot at the top called puncta which is the characteristic feature of this cyst. The wall of the gland becomes the sac of the cyst. This is not the case with abscess as there is no sac.

These cyst might become infected in long standing cases which will present with features similar to an abscess.

Treatment include removal of the cyst along with its sac. Draining of the cyst will lead to recurrence of the cyst as the sac is the gland itself and it will continue secreting the sebum. Infected sebaceous cyst needs incision and drainage and antibiotics and NSAIDs. After resolution of inflammation cyst removal is done.

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