All You Need to Know about Pilonidal Sinus

“Pilonidal Sinus“ is an Italian term, which means a nest of hair, highlighting the main cause of the disease – ingrown hair. It’s a less known ailment but is common among young generation, especially males between an age group of 20 to 30. A pilonidal cyst is a cystic structure developed along the coccyx region (tailbone) in the cleft of the buttocks, located almost 4-5 cm from the anus. This cyst is filled with hair, bacteria and skin debris.

Common Symptoms

More than one cyst may also develop, which later connect to each other by tunnels formed under the skin. It eventually forms an abscess. A patient suffers from a lot of pain and soreness in the particular body part. Even after pus discharge from the cyst, it continues to fill up with detritus leading to re-infection. One must see a Colorectal Surgeon well before the sinus becomes severe. If the cyst is infected, then pus is drained out and the patient experiences fever, pain & swelling in lower spinal region and warmth & redness in the affected skin.

There may not be any noticeable symptoms indicting the occurrence of a pilonidal sinus. As soon as a small dimple-like depression is developed on the skin in natal cleft, one should immediately seek for a doctor’s assistance. This dimple-like depression is infected later to develop into a cyst filled with abscess.

Males are most likely to suffer from pilonidal sinus. Let’s see what the risk factors are.

Family history
Profession demanding prolonged sitting or driving
Copious hair (hirsute)
Deep natal cleft

A pilonidal cyst is diagnosed by physical examination and prominent symptoms.

Pilonidal Sinus Treatment

If not infected, pilonidal sinus can be cured by medication. However, an infected sinus has to be treated by a surgery. Conventional surgery is performed under local anesthesia to remove all the debris and abscess from the cyst. However, recurrence is common, as it is estimated to occur in approximately 40%-50% of individuals. At Dr. Ashwin Porwal’s Healing Hands Clinic, Excision & Primary Closure are provided for successful pilonidal sinus treatment in and around Pune.

Maintaining hygiene in the sacrococcygeal area is critical to prevent pilonidal sinus. Keeping the area clean, dry and free of hair is the best preventive measure.

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