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"What is a cyst?"


I don't really know what a cyst is but I think that it is possible that I have one. It is like a lump on the back of my leg that sort of looks like a really bad mosquito or insect bite but it doesn't itch or hurt at all. Just like a soft lump. Is that a cyst?


A cyst is a collection of material that is completely lined with a covering, something like a shell, all the way around. Treatment of these often involves more than just removing the contents of whatever is infected and bothering you (causing the area to be red and angry looking, and usually causing pain or itching), and instead involves complete removal of all of the lining of whatever is covering the area. This will require numbing medication and a moderate amount of time to remove completely, although it can often be done in an office visit.

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If it is a pseudocyst, it is not completely ringed with the shell that a true cyst has, but it is often treated the exact same way. Often, attempts will be made to cure either simply by lancing the area with a large needle, or incising the area to see if there is any pus that can be expressed. The key is to remove any collections inside of the region, as antibiotics are not effective at penetrating collections of infection, and the so the area will not heal appropriately, or will leave a large scar. Please speak with your doctor about your concerns and further treatment.

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