Literally a pain in the butt, pilonidal disease is a painful skin infection that often recurs. It requires a dedicated professional for the appropriate surgical treatment. David Magner, MD, FACS, FASCRS in Beverly Hills, California makes his patients feel as comfortable as possible while relying on the most minimally-invasive approaches to colorectal surgery. If pilonidal disease is creating misery in a sensitive area, call Dr. Magner’s office or book an appointment online today.
Pilonidal disease is a chronic skin infection located in the crease between the buttocks near the tailbone. It’s common amongst young men, especially overweight or active men.
It occurs when hair follicles in the region burrow under the skin and become inflamed and infected, so is more common in men with coarse, thick body hair. These "nests" of hair follicles often become infected and very painful.
Pilonidal disease occurs more commonly in men than women. It’s most likely to develop in men between puberty and age 40.
Some factors that increase your chances of having pilonidal disease include obesity and having particularly thick, coarse body hair.
It’s possible that exercise, or even walking, may increase your chances of a fair follicle becoming infected in between your buttocks.
Pilonidal disease often has no symptoms at all. If a pilonidal cyst becomes infected, you may experience:
Dr. Magner can easily diagnose pilonidal disease by a simple physical exam of the buttocks. He probably won’t need to conduct any further tests to determine whether you have pilonidal cysts.
If your cysts are infected, he may need to open and drain them in a simple, office procedure. You may need to take antibiotics if the infection is severe. Pilonidal cysts may take over a month to heal.
While you receive treatment for an infected cyst, it’s essential to keep the area dry and clean. You may want to soak in a warm bath several times per day and avoid sitting on hard surfaces for extended periods of time.
In the case that your cysts don’t heal after being drained, or they get infected again, you may need to have surgery to remove them.