What are Cysts?

Cysts are abnormal pockets of fluid or other material that have been walled off by a cyst sac and can appear anywhere on the body, face, and scalp. Because cysts can result from a vast array of conditions, there are literally hundreds of cyst subtypes. Common causes of skin cysts, include trauma, infected acne, retained splinter, and blockage of ducts. Although most cysts are about the size of a pea, larger cysts may occur and can become tender and painful. Usually, cysts are asymptomatic and painless, unless they become large, inflamed, or infected. They generally feel like smooth, firm lumps under the skin, that are not moveable. Lumps that feel soft, doughy, and can be moved about with the fingers may be lipomas.

Treating Cysts

The definitive treatment for cysts involves complete excision of the cyst sac. This requires meticulous excision technique so no residual sac remnant is left behind. If any sac material is left behind, the cyst will have the potential to grow back. Most cysts will oscillate in their size, meaning they will grow and shrink, but in general, they will continue to get larger. In general, we encourage you to have your cyst removed while it is small as this will result in a smaller surgical incision line. If a cyst is actively infected, it will require a two staged treatment plan. At your first visit, the infected cyst will be drained to release the built up pressure and to get a culture to guide your antibiotic regimen. One week later, you will return for a definitive excision of the cyst sac.


sebaceous cyst

How our patients feel about us:

Very kind and gentle... Dr. Mowlavi is very kind and gentle. He took an extra few minutes to calm my fears and had me laughing by the end of the procedure. I will have him take care of any future procedures. I am even sending my husband to see him.


Dr. Mowlavi did an incredible job... People still can not believe when I tell them that I had skin cancer removed from the middle of my forehead. Dr. Mowlavi did an incredible job and I am thankful I was referred to him for my surgery.

Patti R. Laguna Niguel, CA

I think I looked 10 years younger almost immediately... Dr. Mowlavi and his staff were the most caring, compassionate and understanding people I have had the pleasure of dealing with. He treated my mom who is 83 and each time I felt he was treating her as if she was his mom... The treatment was prompt, painless, and successful. I would not hesitate to recommend Dr. Mowlavi to anyone in the future. It has proven to be one of the best doctor experiences I have ever had.

Jim G. San Clemente, CA

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