Cyst

Cyst

Cyst Definition and meaning:- It is an abnormal lump or sac like structure, mostly filled with fluid which can be found anywhere on the body.

What is a Cyst?

It is an abnormal pouch like structure or lump that can grow anywhere on the body. It is usually filled with liquid substance, but sometimes a it can also contain a gaseous or semi-solid substance and have an outer layer termed as a capsule.

Cysts can vary in size depending upon the type and location of occurrence. Some cysts are just a few centimeters in diameter while some are so large that they can even cause displacement of certain organs. For instance, an ovarian cyst can cause the ovary to twist resulting in blocked blood supply and severe pain.

The lump can occur at various locations or tissues and is often named after the area where it occurs. For example, a fluid filled growth in the ovary is called an ovarian cyst while the one that occurs in the brain is called a brain cyst.

31 Types of Cyst in Human Body

There are as many as hundred types of cysts that can grow anywhere on the body. Most of the them are benign; however some cysts can become cancerous if left untreated. Let’s look at different types of cysts that are found in the body:

  1. Breast Cyst is a fluid-filled sac inside the breast. A woman can have a it in one breast or even both. They are usually round or oval in shape and have divergent edges. A breast cyst can vary in size from mere centimeters to up to 2 inches in diameter and often resembles a water-balloon. Click here for detailed information.
  1. Ganglion Cyst typically affects the joints and tendons. It is a bulge on the wrists or hands that occurs alongside the tendons or joints. It is filled with a clear fluid and looks like a golf ball filled with thick, gummy and clear looking gelatine like material. Check out for more information.
  1. Dermoid Lump is a sac like growth present since birth and contains fillings like teeth, hair, fluid or extra skin glands that are found in the skin. It can be found in diverse organs or parts of the body like ovaries, spine, nasal canal, brain or the neck and can grow in the womb itself. It is difficult to prevent a dermoid cyst. Click here to get more information.
  1. Ovarian Cyst  is an assembly of fluid or a fluid filled sac which develops in one or both the ovaries of a woman. Any ovarian follicle present in the ovaries which is larger than 2 cm in diameter is termed as an ovarian cyst. They can range comprehensively in size and can be as small as a pearl or as large as an orange. Check out for more information by clicking here.
  1. Baker’s Cyst  is a fluid filled pouch that occurs as a lump at the back side of the knee. It is filled with synovial fluid that is a greasing fluid found inside the knee joint and is mostly found in patients who have an underlying knee condition like osteoarthritis. It is also called a popliteal cyst. Click here to know more.
  1. Bartholin Cyst  is a fluid or mucus filled sac which forms when the duct of the Bartholin gland gets clogged. If the fluid inside the cyst gets infected, you can develop pus formation surrounded by inflamed tissues resulting in Bartholin abscess formation. Click here to get more information.
  1. Arachnoid Cyst :- It is an accumulation of the cerebrospinal fluid covered by collagen and the arachnoid cells. It develops in between the base of the brain in the cranial base or on the arachnoid membrane.
  1. Labia Cyst is a fluid-filled closed sac that can occur on either side of the vaginal canal. It is painless in nature and is often caused by physical trauma, such as laceration or surgery. The cyst is usually very small and cannot be seen by the naked eye, but in some rare cases it may grow to the size of an apple.
  1. Pilonidal Cyst is an atypical growth in the skin and is usually filled with hair and skin debris. It is located at the extreme end of the tail bone and at the top fold of the rears above the sacrum. It usually occurs when a hair strand punctures the skin and gets embedded in it. Click here to check out for more information.
  1. A Nabothian cyst is a cyst or a mucous filled sac that grows on the surface of the cervix, which is the joining body part between the vagina and the uterus located at the lower end of the uterus, at the top of the vagina. Click here for more information.
  1. Spermatocele :- A cyst like mass that forms within the epididymis is called Spermatocele. It is filled with deceased sperm cells and fluid and is also called an epididymis cyst. Spermatoceles are benign in nature and do not affect the sexual functioning of a man or his erectile role or reproductive capability. click here for more information on spermatocele.
  1. Pineal Cyst :- Pineal cysts are the cysts that form in the pineal gland, a small organ in the brain that produces melatonin which is a sleep-regulating hormone. Pineal cysts are very common and are often found in up to 15% of people undergoing CT or MRI brain imaging.
  1. A Sebaceous cyst is a benign cyst that forms on the skin and contain an oily or semi-liquid material. It often contains fragments of Keratin that is whitish in color. They are mostly seen on the face, neck or torso. It is a slow growing lump under the skin which is mobile and gives out coarse order. Find out more by clicking here.
  1. Colloid Cyst is a gradually-growing tumor which is typically found near the center of the brain. In case it becomes large, it obstructs cerebrospinal fluid movement, resulting in accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid in the ventricles of the brain (hydrocephalus) and raised brain pressure.
  1. Thyroid Cyst is a fluid-filled nodule in the thyroid glands, resulting from the degeneration of thyroid adenomas. These cysts are generally benign in nature, but they infrequently contain malignant solid components.
  1. Pancreatic Cyst :- Pancreatic cysts are bags of fluid on or inside the pancreas which is a large organ behind the stomach that harvests hormones and enzymes required for the digestion of food. Most of the pancreatic cysts benign and do not show any signs or symptoms.
  1. Pilar Cyst which is also known as trichilemmal cysts is a subcutaneous cyst that is found on the scalp. It originates from the hair follicles and is filled with keratin, the protein which is widely found in nails, hair and skin. Pilar cysts are benign in nature and are often inherited from parents. Find out more by clicking here.
  1. Tarlov Cyst :- Tarlov cysts are fluid-filled sacs that affect the nerve origins of the spine, especially near the base of the spine.
  1. Conjunctival Cyst is a thin-walled pouch or vesicle that contains fluid. This cyst may develop either under or inside the conjunctiva. It generally does not require treatment and goes away on its own.
  1. Haemorrhagic Cyst contains blood or starts bleeding is called a Haemorrhagic Cyst. For example, Haemorrhagic ovarian cysts (HOCs) usually result from haemorrhage into a corpus luteum or other functional cyst.
  1. A maxillary sinus cyst is a benign formation which is a small pouch with a two-layer boundary and is filled with liquid. They are not harmful unless they breed themselves and cause intrusion on the growth of other tissues neighboring them. They can be caused by contaminations or inflammatory reactions.
  1. Aneurysmal Cyst :- These abrasions are found in bones and other arrangements and contain of neoplastic cells and blood vessels that look like a sponge-like structure.
  1. Liver Cyst or Hepatic Cyst is a fluid-filled cavity in the liver which usually causes no signs or symptoms. It usually does not require treatment. Sometimes it may become large enough to cause pain or uneasiness in the upper right part of the abdomen.
  1. Lumbar Synovial Cyst  grows in the lumbar spine and may cause symptoms of spinal stenosis is called Lumbar Synovial.
  1. Epidermoid Cyst :- Epidermoid cysts are also called sebaceous, keratin, or epithelial cysts and are small, hard bumps that develop underneath the skin. These cysts are common and grow very gradually. Epidermoid cysts are often found on the face, head, neck, back, or genitals.
  1. Cystic Hygroma :- A cystic hygroma which is also known as cystic lymphangioma and macrocystic lymphatic malformation is a congenital multiloculated lymphatic lesion that can grow anywhere, but is classically found in the left subsequent area of the neck and armpits.
  1. Hydatid Disease :- In Hydatid disease, a small tapeworm forms cysts in the liver or lungs. The tapeworm eggs are spread by interaction with infested dogs, their faeces or anything contaminated with faeces such as soil.
  1. Chalazion Cyst :- The tiny eyelid glands (meibomian glands) make an emollient that comes out of tiny openings in the edges of the eyelids. Cysts can form if these ducts get blocked due to one or more reasons.
  1.  A dentigerous or follicular cyst is associated with the crown of a non-erupted (or partially erupted) tooth. The cyst cavity is ruled by epithelial cells that grow from the abridged enamel epithelium of the tooth forming organ.
  1. Periapical Cyst :- Periapical cysts, also known as radicular cysts, are the most common cystic lacerations related to teeth and form as a result of infection of the teeth.

They are generally present as round or pear-shaped, unilocular, semi-transparent lesions in the periapical region and less than 1 cm in size.

  1. Renal Cyst :- A variety of cysts can develop in the kidneys. Renal cysts contain fluids and may sometimes also contain blood. Some renal lumps are present since birth while the others may be caused by tubular blockages. Patients with kidney vascular diseases may also have these lumps formed by the dilatation of blood vessels.

Size of a Cyst

The size of can range from a few centimeters to up to 50 centimeters in diameter depending upon its type and location of growth. In case of ovaries, sometimes these can become so large that they cause the ovary to twist (torsion), blocking the blood supply and causing severe pain.

Characteristics of a Cyst

Some precise characteristic that make these fluid filled sacs distinct are:

  • Round or oval shape with distinct edges
  • Gradual growth
  • Movable lumps which are generally painless in nature
  • Lumps filled with one or more substances like fluid, gas, hair or other debris found in the body
  • Redness on getting infected

Symptoms of a Cyst

Most of the small lumps do not show any sign or symptoms. However, the list of symptoms widely depends upon the location of occurrence and type . Some possible symptoms that can be generalized are:

  • Pain in the area of occurrence, especially in case of cysts that grow on or inside the skin
  • A movable lump
  • Increase in size of the lump
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Discomfort
  • Redness
  • Inflammation of the affected area
  • Headache

Causes of a Cyst

Cysts are common defects that can occur in people of any age group, sex or gender. There are a variety of them (as discussed above) and each of them grows as a result of a specific mechanism or reaction in the body.

Some of them are caused by defects during the embryonic growth whereas the others are caused due to physical trauma or obstructions in the flow of body fluids in various organs.

For example, a sebaceous growth is formed due to blockage in the sebaceous gland that contains oil like fluid.

Other causes are:

  • Tumors
  • Genetic circumstances
  • Viral or Bacterial infections
  • Chronic inflammatory diseases
  • Parasite infestation

Which Doctor Treats a Cyst?

The first doctor that you will visit, after discovering your lump will most likely be your general physician or family doctor. However, after diagnostic examinations and findings, you may be referred to a specialist based on the location of occurrence. For instance, for an ovarian cyst you may be referred to a gynecologist, for an unwanted growth in the brain, you may be referred to a neurologist, for a growth in the spine; you may be referred to an orthopedic surgeon and so on.

When are the risk factors associated with cysts?

Though it is difficult to list risk factors for each type, there are certain risk factors that come with all types of cysts. They are:

  • Tumors
  • Infections
  • Serious inflammatory reactions or conditions
  • Malignancy (in very rare cases)

Are cysts and fibroid the same thing?

Fibroids and cysts are benign growths that can cause severe symptoms like pain and bleeding while sometimes they can no symptoms at all. Both can range in size from very small to very large and can be single or multiple during the growth stages.

The main difference between a fibroid and a cyst is the location of occurrence and the texture of the growth. Fibroids are usually found in the uterus while cysts can occur anywhere in the body. Also, cysts are filled with a certain type of fluid, depending upon the type of cyst, while fibroids are filled with dense tissues.

Both can be diagnosed during pelvic ultrasounds and require surgery during the later phases when conventional treatment does not yield good results. Also, the cause of ovarian cysts and fibroids are common which is Liver overwork and Estrogen dominance.

What is the difference between a tumor and a cyst?

A cyst is a sac filled with one or more types of fluid and is usually benign in nature. It can form in any part of the body including parts like bones and soft tissues, whereas, a tumor an abnormal collection of tissues or swelling which can form in any part of the body. A tumor can be benign or cancerous in nature.

Can cysts become cancerous?

Cysts are common fluid-filled growth that can form on any part of the body. They are usually non-cancerous in nature and rarely turn cancerous. However, it is very important to ascertain whether your growth is just a cyst or something serious like cancer.

An ultrasound is the easiest way to find out if your lump is a cyst or not. Your doctor may also create an incision in the sac to drain the extra fluid to check the presence of cancer cells.

Are cysts hereditary?

Yes! Some cysts are hereditary.

For instance, polycystic kidney disease is one autosomal recessive and autosomal disease where the genes that cause them have been identified during medical studies. There is also a strain of genes that causes these lumps to grow in only one part of the kidney called the medulla.

A tendency to form pilar and sebaceous cysts also runs in some families and is hereditary. Other cysts like epidermoid cysts, ovarian cysts, pilonidal cysts etc are generally not causes because of genes or family history.

Are cysts contagious?

No. Cysts are not contagious even if the causative agent in a virus or bacteria. The growth is the body’s reaction to foreign body contamination and is filled with one or more kind of substance like fluid.

When to visit a doctor?

If you are facing any of the below symptoms, then it’s time you must rush to a doctor for immediate consultation:

  • An extremely painful cyst
  • Inflammation or redness
  • A rapidly growing lump
  • Change in color of the lump
  • Sudden rupture
  • Any kind of infection
  • A lump that is oozing pus or blood
  • Sudden onset of high fever

How to prepare yourself for a cyst appointment?

It does not matter whether your first appointment takes place at your general physician’s clinic or a specialist’s clinic. There are certain tips that you should keep in mind and adhere to before you set out for your appointment:

  • Make a detailed list of your symptoms including those which are not directly related to the cyst. Do not miss out on any as your symptoms form the basis of the initial diagnosis.
  • Jot down a brief note of your medical history and on-going treatment (if any)
  • Make a list of medicines and supplements that you are currently taking
  • Prepare a list of questions that you may want to ask your doctor about your cyst.

Some of those questions can be:

  • What caused it to grow?
  • Does the presence of the lump increase my risk of any sort of cancer?
  • What kind of tests will I be asked to undergo?
  • Does the lump require treatment?
  • Are there any points that I have to follow?
  • What is the name of my problem?
  • Does it increase my list of developing cysts in other parts of the body?
  • What if I leave it untreated?
  • Is it hereditary in nature?

For the moment, also be ready to answer the following questions that your doctor may ask you:

  • When did you first notice the symptoms?
  • How long has the lump been there?
  • Is it painful?
  • If yes, what is the severity of the pain?
  • Is it accompanied by fever?
  • Have you ever had a problem like this before?
  • Does anyone if your family have a i?
  • Do you have any underlying medical condition?
  • Are you consuming any medication or supplements?
  • When did you last have any diagnostic tests?

Diagnosis of a Cyst

Once your doctor is sure that you have a cyst, you will be asked to undergo a series of blood tests and imaging tests that will help your doctor conclude which type of cyst you have and what treatment will you require. Some tests that you may be asked to undergo are:

  • Blood tests
  • X-rays
  • Ultrasound
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
  • CAT scan
  • Needle biopsy (in case the doctor suspects malignancy)

Treatment of a Cyst

Normally, cysts are left alone and do not require any treatment. However, if they grow larger than expected, severely painful, red and swollen or infected, it may require immediate treatment and medical attention. In some cases, surgery may be required to remove the it completely. There are three types of surgical techniques that are used to remove cysts surgically:

  1. Conventional Wide Excision
  2. Minimal Excision
  3. Punch Biopsy Excision
  • Conventional Wide Excision :- This method targets the complete removal of the cyst. A wide excision is made on it without draining it. This procedure is mostly used in case of cysts that are firm and do not drain easily. Though this method ensures that it does not grow again, it leaves a big scar which cannot be hidden easily.
  • Minimal Excision :- This procedure involves removal of the cyst along with drainage. It is opted by those who do not wish to have a long scar on their body. However, this method does not ensure the permanent removal of the lump and it can occur anytime again.
  • Punch Biopsy Excision :- This procedure is carried out with the help of laser technique. The incision on the cyst is created using laser and it is then drained. After 4-5 weeks, the wall of the cyst is removed through the minimal excision method. This procedure is accompanied by minimal scarring and the chances of its recurrence is also very less. The only drawback of this procedure being- it is very time consuming.

Treatment of Underlying Medical Condition

If the cause of the cyst is an underlying medical condition, then the condition must be treated in order to avoid the growth of the unwanted lumps filled with fluid. For instance, osteoarthritis is responsible for a cyst at the back of the knee while Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome or PCOS can be the cause of an ovarian cyst.

Simple Drainage of fluid

Your doctor may drain the trapped fluid from the fluid filled lump using a needle called an aspiration needle. This procedure is performed under the supervision of ultrasounds.

Home Remedies for a Cyst

There are plentiful home remedies that are really helpful in getting rid of different kinds of cysts without the use of surgical treatment. They are:

  • Ice Compress :- You can make ice packs by packing ice cubes in a clean towel. Apply the pack of 15-20 minutes to bring down swelling and pain. Do not apply ice directly over the affected area as it can result in an ice burn. This is useful for cysts like Pilar Cyst, Baker’s cyst and Pilonidal Cyst.
  • Alternate Hot and Cold Compress :- Place a bucket of ice cold water and hot water side by side. Place a towel in both the buckets alternately and place it over the cyst in an alternating fashion for 30-45 seconds each. Continue the hot and cold procedure for 15-20 minutes and repeat 4-5 times a day. Ensure that the water is not very hot or very cold to avoid burning your cyst or the skin.  This technique is also very useful for cysts like Pilar Cyst, Baker’s cyst and Pilonidal Cyst.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar :- It comes handy in eliminating trapped fluid and shrinking the cyst. Prepare a mix by putting together a tablespoon of organic apple cider vinegar and a teaspoon of honey in a glass filled with hand-hot water. Consume the mixture 3-4 times a day before each meal for best results. This is helpful for almost all kinds of cysts.
  • Cold Pressed Castor Oil :- Soak a cotton ball in castor oil and dab it on the cyst gently at least 3 times a day.  This will help in reducing the size of the cyst. The only thing to remember that the cold pressed oil should be a branded one and not any local oil. This is especially very useful in case of Baker’s cyst.
  • Turmeric :- Turmeric is very powerful when it comes to breaking open the cyst and healing it naturally. All you have to do is, boil half a teaspoon of turmeric in one cup of water. Drink the mixture every night before sleeping. You can even consume it during the day. Continue the same remedy for 10-15 days and you will notice changes in the cyst size and shape.
    • You can also make a paste of turmeric and mint and apply it directly on the cyst for half an hour after which you can wash the cyst with plain lukewarm water. This remedy is very useful in case of sebaceous cyst and pilonidal cyst.
  • Baking Soda :- Prepare a mixture of baking soda, salt and water and apply the paste on the cyst. Baking soda has marvellous pH controlling properties which prevents bacterial growth and helps in keeping bacterial infections at bay.
  • Epsom Salt :- You can bathe in a lukewarm Epsom salt bath to get help from pain. It contains magnesium sulphate which helps in providing relief from pain. This home remedy is useful for cysts like pilonidal cysts which are generally painful.
  • Tea Tree Oil :- A magical anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial remedy, tea tree oil helps in dealing with all sorts of bacterial and fungal skin infections that can cause the cyst to become infected. You can prepare a mix of tea tree oil and water and apply it directly on the cyst with the help of a cotton ball. It should contain the ratio 9:1. You can also apply few drops of tea tree oil on the cyst directly and cover it. It is very efficient for treating cysts like sebaceous cyst and pilar cyst.
  • Fresh Herbs :- Herbs like celery seeds; turmeric, black pepper and cinnamon act as powerful anti-inflammatory natural agents and can help in reducing any kind of inflammation caused by the cyst. Make use of these herbs in your day to day meals as much as possible.
  • Cabbage Leaves :- Over the years, cabbage leaves have proved to be a very helpful remedy for treating superficial cysts like dermoid cysts and pilar cysts. It helps in reducing the size of the lump and intensity of pain. All you have to do is, take two clean cabbage leaves and cut them according to the size of your lump. Tie them over the it and leave for 30-45 minutes.
  • Chamomile Tea :- It is considered a good remedy for pain, nausea and discomfort associated especially with ovarian cysts. It is also a very mild sedative and eases stressed and contracted muscles. It is a great remedy of irregular and painful menstrual periods.
    • Mix two spoons of Chamomile Tea in a cup of hot water. Cover and let dissolve for at least 5 minutes. Strain and add one spoon of honey or brown sugar. Consume at least 2 times a day for best results.
  • Ginger Juice :- Ginger prompts menstruation, increases body heat and provides relief from pain and cramps due to its anti-inflammatory properties which makes it an excellent remedy for ovarian cysts.
    • Prepare a mix of ginger juice, turmeric and apple juice together and consume the juice once daily until bump disappears. Ginger tea can also be consumed as an alternate remedy.
  • Homeopathic Measures :- Homeopathic medicines like Silicia and Hedpar Sulph are used to treat almost all cysts naturally. They cause the cyst to reduce in size and disappear without the need of any medication or surgical technique.
  • Vitamin C and D :- Vitamin C and D help in boosting the immune system and allow it to fight deadly bacteria and virus preventing the lumps from deadly infections and rupture. Include citrus fruits like oranges and sweet lime in your daily diet.
  • Aloe Vera Gel :- Aloe Vera gel contains super anti-inflammatory properties that haste up the healing process cysts like Ganglion cysts.
    • Extract some gel from a fresh Aloe Vera leaf and gently apply the gel on the affected area. Leave it untouched for 15-20 minutes after which rinse the gel with plain tap water. Repeat the procedure 2-3 times a day for best results.

Complications of Cysts

There are several possible complications. Some of them are:

  • In case of patients with an infected ruptured lump, the infection can spread to other parts of the body and become dangerous
  • Spinal subdural abscess is also a possible complication if the fatty content causes spread of bacterial infection.
  • In case of growths present in the nasal passage or mouth, the patient can face difficulty in breathing and speech problems
  • Ovarian cysts can cause torsion of the affected ovary, blocking the blood supply and resulting is severe pain.
  • In very rare cases, on being left untreated, they can also transform into carcinomas which are malignant in nature.

Cyst Pictures

Checkout these pictures of different kinds of cysts and how they look.

Breast cyst

Illustration of a lump in the breast

ganglion cyst

Top side view of a Ganglion growth

dermoid cyst

Contents of a dermoid bump

ovarian cyst

Illustration of an Ovarian Cyst

baker's cyst

Baker’s cyst in a patient with Rheumatoid Arthritis

bartholin cyst

A Bartholin gland lump vs A normal vagina

Archanoid Cyst

An Archanoid Cyst

Spermatocele

A Spermatocele

Thyroid cyst

X-ray image of a growth in the Thyroid gland

Colloid Cyst

MRI image of a cyst in the brain

 

Lumbar Synovial Cyst

Illustration of a Lumbar Synovial Lump

hepatic cyst

Laparoscopic view of a hepatic cyst

Baker’s Cyst

baker’s cyst

Baker’s Cyst Definition : – It is a bag of fluid that appears as a lump at the back of the knee. It causes stiffness in the knee along with pain.

Understanding a Baker’s Cyst

It is a fluid filled sac that is forms a bump at the back of the knee. It is often packed with synovial fluid that is a greasing fluid found inside the knee joint. It is mostly observed in patients who have an underlying knee condition like osteoarthritis.

The cyst is named after William Baker who first discovered and defined the condition in 1877. A Baker’s cyst is also known as a popliteal cyst as it forms on the area behind the knee that is medically termed as popliteal fossa.

The bulge causes stiffness at the back of the knee with pain that can increase when you straighten your leg, stretch it or extend it while walking.

Some Important Terms

Synovial Fluid

The joint capsule is a thick construction that surrounds the knee and provides backing. It is lined by a distinct membrane called the synovium. The synovium produces a liquid called synovial fluid that acts as a greasing agent for the knee joint and protects it during movement.

Popliteal Bursa

There are several tissue sacs next to the knee called bursae. It is a small bag of synovial fluid with a thin lining. They help is decreasing the friction and allow free motion of the joints. The bursa at the back of the knee are called Popliteal Bursa.

Size of a Baker’s Cyst

The average size of a Baker’s cyst is approximately 3.2 centimeters. However, the size can vary from a very small size cyst to a cyst as large as a golf ball. In extreme cases, the cyst can grow up to the size a baseball.

Baker’s Cyst Symptoms

The behavior of a Baker’s cyst cannot be predicted and varies from one patient to another. Some cysts are extremely painful, while some cysts show no pain or symptoms. Below are few symptoms that you can experience if you have a Baker’s cyst:

  • Swelling at the back of the knee
  • A noticeable bulge behind the knee
  • Swelling of the knee joint
  • Pain around the knee area
  • Pain at the location of the cyst
  • Pain of stretching or extending legs
  • Difficulty in bending the knee
  • Sensation of ticking or locking of the knee
  • Stiffness in the knee
  • Redness in the affected area

Baker’s Cyst Causes

There are two different ways in which a Baker’s cyst can form:

Primary or Idiopathic Baker’s Cyst

This type of Baker’s cyst is formed which forms when synovial fluid from within the joint seeps into the popliteal bursa. The connection between the knee joint and the popliteal bursa causes the cyst to occur.

This type of cyst is also known as an idiopathic Baker’s cyst. It develops at the back of a healthy knee joint and is mostly observed in younger adults and children.

Secondary Baker’s Cyst

In case of a secondary Baker’s cyst an underlying problem like osteoarthritis or tear in the meniscal cartilage that protects the knee joint causes the cyst to form. One of these underlying problems increases the production of synovial fluid inside the knee joint. This causes elevation in pressure on the joint as a result of which the joint capsule stretches and bulges out into the popliteal bursa. As a result of this, a Baker’s cyst filled with synovial fluid is formed.

Who is an increased risk of developing a Baker’s Cyst?

It is mostly observed in children aged between 4 to 8 years and adults aged between 30-65 years. They are more common in young adults than children. If you have an underlying medical condition like arthritis, then you are at a higher risk of developing a Baker’s cyst.

Which doctor do you need to see for a Baker’s Cyst?

Your first point of consultation will be your general physician or family doctor. However, you will be later directed to an orthopaedic that treats underlying conditions of the knees and other bones in the body.

When to see a doctor?

You must visit your doctor straightaway if you notice any of the following:

  • A bulge that is growing rapidly
  • An extremely painful cyst
  • Unexplained redness
  • Leakage of fluid from the cyst

Baker’s Cyst Diagnosis

To determine if the bulge behind your knee is actually a Baker’s cyst, your doctor may carry out or recommend the following:

  • Perform a thorough physical examination of the bulge and your knee joint
  • Compare the affected knee with your healthy knee
  • Ask questions related to your medical history and underlying medical conditions associated with the knee
  • Shine a light through your swelling to check if it is filled with fluid
  • An ultrasound
  • X-ray of the knee joint
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) for detailed study of the knee joint and presence of injured cartilages.

How to prepare yourself for the appointment?

Your first appointment can take place at your general physician’s or orthopaedics’ clinic. Follow the simple to-do steps below to have a perfect appointment session:

  • Note down your symptoms including those which are not directly related to the Baker’s cyst
  • Write down a short summary of your medical history and on-going treatment and medications (if any)
  • Make a list of questions that you may want to ask your doctor about Baker’s cyst like:
  • What caused the cyst to grow?
  • What sort of diagnosing testing will I require?
  • Is the cyst short lived or permanent?
  • Why is the cyst so painful?
  • Why am I facing trouble while exercising?
  • What is the line of treatment?
  • Will there be any side effects?
  • Should I cut down on my activity to avoid pain?
  • Is the cause of my cyst Arthritis?
  • I accidentally injured my knee joint last month, is that the cause of the cyst?
  • Meanwhile, also be ready to answer the following questions that your doctor may ask you:
  • When did you first notice the symptoms?
  • Did you have a knee injury off lately?
  • Do you have an underlying knee condition or ailment?
  • Do you experience knee locking or ticking?
  • What is the degree of stiffness?
  • Is the cyst painful?
  • If yes, how severe is the pain?

Baker’s Cyst Complications

Complications associated with a Baker’s cyst are uncommon and hardly occur. Some of them are:

  • Extreme pain
  • Redness of the cyst
  • Inflammation in the surrounding area
  • Leakage of the cyst
  • Continued swelling

These cysts can become severely complicated if the cyst starts leaking and the synovial fluid spreads down to the inner legs near the calf area. It can cause a bruise under the inner ankle which is often painless or swelling of the calf area which is often painful.

Baker’s Cyst Treatment

A Baker’s cyst often subsides and disappears on its own after a certain period of time. However, in some cases, the cyst does not go on its own and requires treatment. It can persist for months or even years. Also, it can rapidly grow and cause severe pain. Based on the symptoms and complications, your doctor may suggest any of the below course of treatments:

Treatment of the Underlying Knee Condition

If the cause of the Baker’s cyst is an underlying knee condition like osteoarthritis, then it is important that you get it treated immediately. This may help in decreasing the size of the cyst and the inflammation. In some cases of osteoarthritis, a steroidal injection is often used to bring down pain and swelling. In case of injury to the meniscal tear, treatment may be administered to help in recovery.

Treatment to provide symptomatic relief

The following treatment methods may be helpful in providing relief from symptoms like pain and swelling:

Medication :- Your doctor may inject a corticosteroid medicine to reduce inflammation. Alternately, NSAIDS (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) like ibuprofen can be prescribed to bring down pain and swelling of the cyst. These medications help in providing relief from symptoms but do not prevent the cyst from recurring.

Ice Packs :- You can create ice packs by wrapping ice cubes in a towel or plastic case. Apply the pack of 15-20 minutes to bring down swelling and pain. Do not apply ice directly over the cyst as it can result in an ice burn.

Physiotherapy :- A physiotherapist can help you get rid of your knee stiffness and help you in strengthening your joints and keep them moving without much pain or trouble.

Crutches :- Crutches can help you walk freely without pain as they allow putting your body weight on them than your knee joint. During the course of treatment, you can use crutches to walk or move from one place to another.

Treatment to remove the Baker’s cyst

Drainage of fluid

Your doctor may drain the synovial fluid from the cyst using a needle called an aspiration needle. This procedure is performed under the supervision of ultrasounds.

Surgical removal of the cyst

If the cyst is extremely large and painful, the cyst may be removed using open surgery. During the surgery, your doctor may remove the inflamed synovium tissue that is the cause of the cyst formation. This type of surgery is known as an arthroscopic surgery. A keyhole method may also be used to disrupt any connection between the Baker’s cyst and the knee joint.

Baker’s Cyst Home Remedies

Try the home remedies and prevention methods mentioned below to get rid of a sebaceous cyst quickly:

Ice Compress :- You can make ice packs by packaging ice cubes in a towel or plastic case. Apply the pack of 15-20 minutes to bring down swelling and pain. Do not apply ice directly over the cyst as it can result in an ice burn.

Alternating Hot and Cold Compress :- Place a bucket of ice cold water and hot water side by side. Place a towel in both the buckets alternately and place it over the cyst in an alternating fashion for 30-45 seconds each. Continue the hot and cold procedure for 15-20 minutes and repeat 4-5 times a day. Ensure that the water is not very hot or very cold to avoid burning your cyst or the skin.

Apple Cider Vinegar :- It comes handy in eliminating fluid and freeing up the joints. All you have to do is mix a tablespoon of organic apple cider vinegar with a teaspoon of honey in a glass filled with lukewarm water. Consume the mixture 3-4 times a day before each meal for best results.

Cold Pressed Castor Oil :- Soak a cotton ball in castor oil and dab it on the Baker’s cyst gently at least 3 times a day.  This will help in reducing the size of the cyst. The only thing to remember that the cold pressed oil should be a branded one and not any local oil.

Turmeric :- Turmeric can help a great deal in breaking open the cyst and healing it naturally. All you have to do is, boil half a teaspoon of turmeric in one cup of water. Drink the mixture every night before sleeping. Continue the remedy for ten days and you will notice changes in the cyst size and formation.

You can also make a paste of turmeric and mint and apply it directly on the cyst for half an hour. Similar remedy can also be used for sebaceous cyst or pilonidal cyst.

Baking Soda :- Prepare a mixture of baking soda, salt and water and apply the paste on the cyst. Baking soda has marvellous pH controlling properties which prevents bacterial growth and helps in keeping bacterial infections at bay.

Epsom Salt :- You can bathe in a lukewarm Epsom salt bath to get help from pain. It contains magnesium sulphate which helps in providing relief from pain.

Tea Tree Oil :- A super anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial remedy, tea tree oil helps in dealing with bacterial and fungal skin infections and infections of the cyst. You can prepare a mix of tea tree oil and water and apply it directly on the cyst. It should contain the ratio 9:1. You can also apply few drops of tea tree oil on the cyst directly and cover it. It can also be used for treating sebaceous cyst (Click here to know more about sebaceous cyst)  and pilar cyst (for more information on pilar cyst Click here).

Fresh Herbs :- Herbs like celery seeds; turmeric, black pepper and cinnamon act as powerful anti-inflammatory natural agents and can help in reducing knee inflammation. Make use of these herbs in your day to day meals as much as possible.

Keep a check on your physical activity

To avoid pain and swelling from increasing, try to rest as much as possible and keep your leg elevated, especially at night.

What is the recovery time for a Baker’s cyst?

Recovery time completely depends on the course of treatment undertaken by you. With the right medications, remedies and treatment, the cyst can heal rapidly within a matter of days or just few weeks. In case of an open surgery, the cyst or the operated area may take 1-2 months to recover.

Baker’s Cyst Pictures

Preview through these pictures of Baker’s cysts to get an idea of how they look.

bakers cyst pictures

Image : – Anatomy of the knee joint

bakers cyst pictures1

Image :- Baker’s cyst in a patient with Rheumatoid Arthritis

bakers cyst pictures 2

Image :- Steroidal injections for a Baker’s cyst

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Image :- Location of a Baker’s cyst

Note: None of the images here are owned by me and nor do I have any copyrights over them.

Sebaceous Cyst

sebaceous cyst pictures 4

Sebaceous Cyst- Definition :- It is a minor, closed pouch under the skin that contains oily or sticky material.

What is a Sebaceous Cyst ?

sebaceous cyst

Sebaceous cysts are benign cysts of the skin that contain an oily or semi-liquid material. They mostly contain fragments of Keratin that are white color and a crucial component of hair and nails. They are mostly observed on the face, neck or torso. It is a slow growing lump under the skin which is movable and gives out foul order.

It is either an epidermoid cyst which forms from the skin or a pilar cyst (click here to know more about pilar cyst) which forms from hair follicles. A sebaceous cyst may form if you have an obstructed sweat gland or hair follicle. Also, having acne surges your risk of developing this cyst.

On getting infected or inflamed, the cyst appears red, swollen and painful.

Size of a Sebaceous Cyst

There is no permanent size up to which a sebaceous cyst can grow. These cysts can range anywhere a few millimeters to several centimeters in size. In some cases, sebaceous cysts have been known to grow up to even 2 inches in size.

Sebaceous Cyst Symptoms

Small sebaceous cysts are usually not painful at all. However, larger cysts are generally painful and uncomfortable and may exhibit the following signs and symptoms:

  • A minor round lump under the skin, often on the torso, neck or face
  • A blackhead on the opening of the cyst
  • A thick whitish-yellowish foul smelling fluid that drains from the cys
  • Redness in the affected area
  • Inflammation in the affected area
  • Increased warmth of the affected skin area
  • A lump which is soft to touch
  • Pressure or pain on the neck or face if the cyst is large

Sebaceous Cyst Causes 

Sebaceous cysts erupt from the sebaceous gland that produces oil called sebum which covers your hair and skin. If this gland gets obstructed due to some reason, a sebaceous cyst is formed. Trauma to the gland is one of the reasons of obstruction. It can be a simple scratch, acne or a surgical injury. Other causes of these cysts are:

  • A deformed sebaceous duct
  • Harm to cells during a surgery
  • One or more genetic disorders like Gardner’s syndrome or basal cell nevus syndrome

Which doctor do you need to see for a Sebaceous Cyst?

Your general physician or family doctor will be the first doctor you see, as soon as your discover the lump. You may then be referred to a Dermatologist for further testing, consultation and treatment.

When to see a doctor?

You must see your doctor immediately if you notice any of the following:

  • A lump that is growing rapidly
  • If the cyst breaks open suddenly
  • If the cyst becomes extremely painful
  • If the cyst becomes infected
  • If the cyst is becoming a cosmetic problem

Sebaceous Cyst Diagnosis

To find out if you actually have a sebaceous cyst or not, your doctor may do the following:

  • Perform a thorough physical examination of the lump
  • Ask questions related to your medical history
  • Scrape a sample of your skin cells from the cyst to observe cells under the microscope and rule out the presence of any dead cells or cancer cells. This method is also called punch biopsy.
  • CT scans which help your doctor figure out if you require a surgery or not
  • Ultrasounds that help the doctor in finding the contents inside the cyst

To-do list before you set out for your appointment

Your first appointment can happen at your general physician’s or gynecologist’s clinic. In order to prepare well for your appointment, here are few things that you can do:

  • Formulate a list of your symptoms including those that may not be associated to your cyst
  • List down all the treatments and supplements that you had been recommended in the past or are consuming at present
  • Prepare a list of questions that you may want to ask your doctor during the meeting. Some of them can be:
  • Is the cyst an epidermoid cyst?
  • Is the cyst a pilar cyst?
  • What caused my cyst to form?
  • Is it infected?
  • What treatment is recommended?
  • Is the cyst a recurring one?
  • Will surgical removal leave a life-long scar?
  • Is there any medication that can help me get rid of this cyst?
  • Why is the cyst so painful?
  • What is the liquid oozing from the cyst?
  • Meanwhile, also be prepared to answer the subsequent questions that your doctor may ask you:
  • When did you first notice the cyst on your skin?
  • Have you had similar skin growths in the past?
  • How often do you have acne issues?
  • Is the cyst painful?
  • Did you scratch your skin recently?
  • Does your family have a family history of skin ailments or skin cysts like sebaceous, pilar and epidermoid cysts?

Sebaceous Cysts Complications

Below is the list of complications associated with a sebaceous cyst:

Infection:- A sebaceous skin infection is every patient’s nightmare. If the cysts become infected, they can become very painful and swollen.

Rupture:- A broken cyst leads to formation of a boil like structure which will require immediate treatment.

Inflammation:- Even if infection is not the cause, a sebaceous cyst can become red and inflamed. It can further lead to delay in surgery as the doctor cannot operate an inflamed cyst. The doctor may have to wait until the swelling comes down.

Sebaceous Cyst Treatment

If the sebaceous cyst is not causing any trouble, there may not be any need to remove it. However, if the cyst becomes infected, grows rapidly or becomes a cosmetic issue, it may require treatment.

Your doctor will suggest one or more lines of treatment based on your symptoms and characteristics of the cyst like size and color. Surgical removal is the most recommended treatment method, as there is high chance of recurrence of the cyst if other treatment methods are used.

Conventional Wide Excision

In this method, your doctor will completely remove the cyst. A wide excision is required to completely get rid of the cyst surgically. This comes handy in case of cysts that are hard and do not drain easily, however the method can leave a long scar on your skin that may not go easily.

Minimal Excision

The doctor may create an incision on the cyst and drain it completely. This method does not create any scar but the chances of the recurrence of the cyst are high

Punch Biopsy

In this method, the doctor used a laser beam to create a small hole in the cyst and drain the fluid. After a month or so, the cyst wall will then be removed using minimal excision method. This method also ensures that scars are not formed and the chances of the recurrence of the cysts are less. The only con being that the method is more time consuming as compared to the former two.

Sebaceous Cyst Home Remedies

Try the home remedies and prevention methods mentioned below to get rid of a sebaceous cyst quickly:

Warm Compress :- Dip a towel or a soft cloth in hot water and put it on the cyst for 5-10 minutes. Repeat the procedure for 4-5 times a day and it will help in curing the cyst gradually and improve blood circulation. You can also make use of a heating pad alternately.

Apple Cider Vinegar :- It contains acetic acid that helps in killing the bacteria causing the infection. Directly apply some Apple Cider Vinegar solution on the cyst and cover it with a surgical gauze or bandage. Repeat for over a week until a hard crust appears on the cyst. Very gently remove this layer in order to break open the cyst and drain the extra fluid. Fresh skin will regrow in a couple of weeks.

Castor Oil :- Soak a cotton ball in castor oil and dab it on the sebaceous cyst gently. Take a hot water bag or compress and place it on the cotton ball. The combined effect of castor oil and the heat from the water bag or the hot compress will help in therapeutic healing of the cyst.

You can also apply a mixture of castor oil and a pinch of baking soda on the cyst.

Turmeric :- Turmeric can help a great deal in breaking open the cyst and healing it naturally. All you have to do is, boil half a teaspoon of turmeric in one cup of water. Drink the mixture every night before sleeping. Continue the remedy for ten days and you will notice changes in the cyst size and formation.

You can also make a paste of turmeric and mint and apply it directly on the cyst for half an hour.

Iodine :- Potassium Iodide solution helps in healing the skin and getting rid of bacterial infections. It is excellent anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It also works as a powerful disinfectant and antiseptic. All properties combined have an amazing healing effect on the cyst.

Baking Soda :- Prepare a mixture of baking soda, salt and water and apply the paste on the cyst. Baking soda has marvelous pH controlling properties which prevents bacterial growth and helps in keeping bacterial infections at bay.

Epsom Salt :- You can bathe in Epsom salt warm bath to get relief from pain. It contains magnesium sulphate which helps in providing relief from pain.

Tea Tree Oil :- A super anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial remedy, tea tree oil helps in dealing with bacterial and fungal skin infections and infections of the cyst. You can prepare a mix of tea tree oil and water and apply it directly on the cyst. It should contain 10% tea tree oil and 90% water. You can also apply few drops of tea tree oil on the cyst directly and cover it.

Aloe Vera :- Aloe Vera is a naturally occurring strong antibiotic which helps in treating sebaceous skin infections. Take out some juice from a fresh Aloe Vera leaf and apply it on the cyst. You can also consume Aloe Vera juice to heal the cyst.

Guava Leaves :- Boil some guava leaves in water and use the solution to wash the cyst. Guava leaves have powerful antimicrobial effects that help in healing the cyst quickly.

Increase Water Consumption :- Ensure that you drink adequate amount of water to eliminate toxic products from the body.

Maintain Hygiene :- In case the cyst pop opens unexpectedly, wash it properly with running water and use an anti-bacterial soap to clean the affected area thoroughly. Tap dry and apply antibiotic or antiseptic cream.

Use Oil Free Skin Products :- Remember to only use skin and cosmetic products that are free from oil.

Avoid Scratching or Itching :- Try your best, not to scratch or itch the cyst. Doing so can break open the same and drain pus or excess liquid which can cause infection in other parts of the body.

Sebaceous Cyst Pictures

Glimpse through these pictures of sebaceous cysts to understand how they look.

sebaceous cyst pictures

Image : A sebaceous cyst on the neck

sebaceous cyst pictures 1

Image :- A sebaceous cyst after removal

sebaceous cyst pictures 2

Image :- A 3 inch sebaceous cyst

sebaceous cyst pictures 3

Image :- A sebaceous cyst on the neck

 

Spermatocele

spermatocele pictures 3

Spermatocele Definition:- A cyst like mass that forms on or within the epididymis is called Spermatocele. It is filled with dead sperm cells and fluid and is also called an epididymis cyst.

Spermatocele- An Overview

Spermatocele

It is a fluid-filled bulk that forms on the epididymis. The genital structure of the male consists of scrotum, which contains a testicle on either side. The testicle further has two main functions. It produces the male hormone, testosterone and the sperm which travels from the testicle into a chain of tubes which join to form the epididymis. The epididymis sits towards the side and at the back of the testis. There are numerous tube like structures that connect the testis to the epididymis. When one of these tubules gets blocked, a cyst forms on the epididymis. It often contains transparent fluid and some dead sperm cells. Spermatoceles are benign in nature and do not affect the sexual functioning of a man or his erectile role or reproductive capability.

They are also called epididymis cysts or spermatic cysts.

Size of a Spermatocele

There is no static size up to which a Spermatocele cyst can nurture. These cysts can range anywhere from the size of a few millimetres in size to a few centimetres. They become palpable when they grow up to 1 centimetre or 2 centimetres in size. 

Spermatocele Symptoms

A Spermatocele usually does not exhibit any signs and symptoms and the size remains fixed. If at all the cyst becomes large in size, it may show on or more of the following symptoms:

  • Pain in the affected testicle
  • Discomfort in the affected testicle
  • A feeling of bulkiness in the testicle
  • Presence of unexplained mass on the testicle

Causes of Spermatocele

Till date, the actual cause of Spermatocele not known. It usually occurs when the tubes of the epididymis that carry and store sperm from the testicle get obstructed. Sometimes trauma and inflammation may also be responsible for the blockage.

Which doctor do you need to consult for Spermatocele?

 

A Spermatocele is usually checked and treated by a urologist, a doctor who specializes in the treatment of the the urinary tract and sex organs in men. At the first instance, you can also consult your General Physician or your family doctor.

When to see a doctor?

If you are experiencing any of the following issues, then you must consult your doctor immediately:

  • Severe pain
  • Abnormal size of the cyst
  • Inflammation and redness
  • Unexplained fever
  • Abdominal pain 

Diagnosis of Spermatocele

To determine if you have a Spermatocele or not, your doctor may follow the below course of action:

  • Perform a thorough physical examination of your testicles and surrounding organs
  • Ask questions related to your medical history
  • Your doctor may also ask you to undergo the following diagnostic tests:

Transillumination

The doctor may shine a light on your scrotum. If a Spermatocele is present, the light will help the doctor determine that the cyst is fluid filled rather than a solid mass.

Scrotal Ultrasound

The transillumination technique does not clearly indicate if a cyst is present or not. It just indicates that fluid is filled inside the growing sac. A scrotal ultrasound which uses high frequency sound waves can be helpful in ruling out testicular tumours and other sources of scrotal growth. 

Preparing for your appointment

Your first appointment can happen at your general physician’s or urologist’s clinic. In order to organize well for your appointment, below are some tips and points that can be helpful. It is always good to reach well-prepared.

  • Prepare a list of all your symptoms
  • Mention if you had any testicular injuries recently
  • Make a list of your current medication or the medication prescribed in the past for a similar problem
  • Prepare a list of questions that you may want to ask your doctor during the meeting. Some of those questions can be:
  • What is the cause of my cyst?
  • What sort of tests will I be required to undergo?
  • Is the condition treatable?
  • How much time will it take to completely go away?
  • Will the cyst affect my fertility?
  • Will the Spermatocele cause trouble while having sex?
  • Will there be any side effects of the treatment?
  • Will I require surgery?
  • If yes, how much recovery time will be required?
  • Is the cyst recurring?
  • Be prepared to answer the following questions that your doctor may ask you:
  • When and how did you first found out your cyst?
  • What all symptoms are you facing?
  • How long before did your symptoms begin?
  • Did you experience any injury on your scrotal area?
  • Do you experience pain?
  • If yes, can you rate the intensity of pain as mild or severe?
  • Does your testicle feel heavy on one side?

Difficulties associated with Spermatoceles

A Spermatocele is highly unlikely to produce any complication. However, if the cyst is growing abnormally or you are facing severe pain and inflammation, then you may have to undergo detailed diagnostic testing and surgery immediately. Surgical removal can harm the vas deferens (a tube that carries sperm from the epididymis to the penis) or the epididymis. Injury to any of these can result in reduction of fertility. Recurrence of the Spermatocele is another complication which is rarely seen.

Spermatocele Treatment

Even though Spermatoceles do not vanish on their own, they may not require any sort of treatment until and unless the problems associated with these cysts are very severe and cause of concern. Based on the severity of your symptoms, the doctor may recommend the following:

Medications

For pain, your doctor may prescribe over the counter pain pills like Tylenol, Paracetomol, Advil, Ibuprofen etc.

Surgical Procedure

A surgery or procedure known as spermatocelectomy may be performed under the influence of general or local anaesthesia.  In this procedure, the surgeon will make a small cut in scrotum and separate the Spermatocele from the epididymis.

After the surgery is done, you may have to wear surgical gauze in order to support and protect the cut and allow it to heal accordingly.  You may also be asked to:

  • Apply ice packs to bring down the inflammation
  • Take pain medicines
  • Return for follow-up treatment after 2-3 weeks of treatment

Aspiration and Sclerotherapy

Another method for treating a Spermatocele is Aspiration with or without sclerotherapy. During aspiration, a special needle is injected into the cyst and the fluid is allowed to drain. If it reappears, the doctor may follow the same procedure to drain the fluid again, followed by insertion of a chemical irritant into the cyst sac so that its burns and does not get filled with fluid again.

Sclerotherapy may cause injury to the epididymis and there are high chances of recurrence of the Spermatocele. 

Spermatocele Home Remedies

In case of Spermatoceles, some natural treatments can be used to get rid of the cyst and relief from the accompanying symptoms:

Balanced Diet:- The best way to treat a Spermatocele naturally is to follow a balanced diet rich in vitamins A, B, C and D and devoid of high fat content. This applies for a other cysts like sebaceous cyst, ganglion cyst and pilar cyst.

Topical Ointments :- Topical creams and supplements like Iodine, Magnesium and Chromium Chloride. According to latest studies, Iodine is a very useful agent in treating epididymis cysts. Usually cysts form due to Iodine deficiency and applying Iodine topically to the cyst, gradually decreases the size of the cyst.

Avoid Tight Undergarments :- Tight undergarments can play a big role in the formation of cysts on the epididymis and testicles. Wear undergarments that are not very tight or very loose.

Prevent UTI (Urinary Tract Infection) :- Take preventive measures to save yourself from urinary tract infections that can infect your Spermatocele. Drink sufficient amount of water and maintain urethral sanitation.

Pumpkin Seeds :- Pumpkin seeds are a very good remedy for cysts of the testis and epididymis. Boil the seeds in hot water and consume them instantly.

Homeopathy :- Few homeopathic drugs like Sepia and Phytollaca can help in getting rid of the epididymis cysts. Consult your doctor for the correct dosage and consume till the cyst disappears.

Spermatocele Prevention

The best way to prevent Spermatoceles from forming is to conduct self-examination of testicles at least twice in a month. This will help you in timely detection of any abnormal growth or mass formation on your testis.

Self-Examination of Testicles: HOW?

The best time to examine your testicles is after a warm shower. The heat from the bath relaxes your scrotum and helps in detecting any abnormal growth. Here is how you do it:

  • Be ready in front of the mirror and stand straight.
  • Gaze for any swelling in the scrotum.
  • Examine each of the testicles carefully with the set of hands.
  • Place the middle finger below the testicles while you place your thumb on top.
  • Softly roll the testicles between the thumbs and the fingers.
  • If there is any growth or cyst, the fingers will not roll gently and a lump will be felt.

Regular self-examination helps in timely detection and treatment of any abnormal growth on the testicles, be it a cyst or a testicular tumour.

Spermatocele Pictures

Look through these pictures below to clearly understand what they are and how they look:

spermatocele pictures

Image : – Illustration depicting a Spermatocele

spermatocele pictures 1

Image:- Swelling of epididymis

spermatocele pictures 2

Image:- Spermatocele surgery

Nabothian Cyst

nabothian cyst pictures 3

Nabothian Cyst Definition:- It is a mucus-filled growth on the surface or the exterior part of the cervix.

What is a Nabothian Cyst?

It is a cyst or a mucous filled lump that develops on the surface of the cervix, which is the connecting body part between the vagina and the uterus located at the lower end of the uterus, at the top of the vagina. It is approximately one inch long, has a structure like that of a canal and is connected to the cervical gland. The dull yellow colored mucous secreted by the cervical gland is filled with the nabothian cysts and hence these cysts are also known as mucinous retention cysts or epithelial cysts.

They are benign in nature and do not pose any potential risks to an individual.

Size of a Nabothian Cyst

The size of these cysts can range from a few millimeters to up to 5 centimeters in diameter. A nabothian cyst bigger than 5 centimeters has not been reported anywhere till date.

Nabothian Cyst picture

Duration and Prevention

There is not set duration for which a nabothian cyst can last. It can stay with you lifelong or vanish itself within few days or months.

There is no known prevention method for these cysts.

Nabothian Cyst Symptoms

These cysts are usually asymptomatic and exhibit very few peculiar symptoms that can be really helpful in their diagnosis. They are:

  • A lump approximately 10 millimeters to 5 centimeters in size
  • White or pale yellow color of the cyst
  • Smooth surface of the cyst
  • Unexplained vaginal bleeding
  • A raised bump
  • Pelvic congestion
  • Pressure on the pelvic region

Causes of Nabothian Cyst

The causes of these cysts are:

Clogging of mucous producing cervical gland :- Nabothian cysts can form when mucous producing glands in the cervix get blocked and coated with skin cells. The skin cells clog the gland that cause mucous collection to take place forming the mucous-filled lump on the cervix that appears white or pale yellow in color.

Childbirth  :- During childbirth surplus skin cells can form on the mucous glands on the cervix and block them causing mucous accumulation to take place. This leads to the formation of mucous-filled cysts.

Physical trauma:- Physical trauma can cause surplus tissue to develop on the surface of the mucous gland, trapping the mucous inside, leading to the formation of mucous-filled nabothian cysts. These cysts are mostly formed during recovery from chronic cervicitis in which the cervix tissues become swollen.

Which doctor do you need to consult for a Nabothian Cyst?

Doctors specializing in the area of female reproductive system, female genital organs and nabothian cysts are called gynecologists. If you doubt that you have a nabothian cyst on your cervix, then you must consult a Gynecologist immediately.

Nabothian Cyst Diagnosis

These cysts can be seen and diagnosed during the pelvic examination. They can also be seen during an MRI, CT scan or a routine pelvic ultrasound. Once the doctor notices a cyst on your cervix, he/she may break one of the cysts open from proper diagnosis.

Colposcopy is another procedure that your doctor may use to identify the cyst. This procedure involves magnifying the affected area to distinguish it from other possible cysts that can grow on the cervix.

During examination, if the doctor suspects that the cyst formation is associated with neoplasia affecting mucous product, he/she may conduct a biopsy of the cyst. This condition is called adenoma malignum and is a very rare condition.

Nabothian Cyst Treatment

These cysts are benign in nature and mostly do not require any treatment. In very rare cases, the cyst may become big in size and distort the shape and size of the cervix. In some cases, it can also make routine cervical examination difficult. In such cases, the doctor may recommend removal of the cyst in order to free the cervix and conduct proper examination.

Surgical procedures

These cysts can be removed surgically using excision or procedures called electro cautery ablation and cryotherapy.

Excision :- During the excision, the doctor may use a scalpel or a blade to remove the cyst.

Electrocautery Ablation :- During electrocautery ablation, the doctor will use an electric current to remove the cyst. The electric current generates heat that your doctor uses to melt the cyst. Your doctor may also drain fluid or mucous from the cyst during this procedure. This procedure is highly recommended by doctors these days due to the minimum blood loss that takes place during it.

Cryotherapy :- In this procedure, the doctor will use liquid nitrogen to freeze the cyst and break it. It is less invasive as compared to excision and electrocautery ablation and most preferred by patients.

Though surgical procedures are the best solution for these cysts, herbal home remedies for nabothian cysts can also come handy in providing relief from infections and inflammation. Aloe Vera, a natural antiseptic and anti-microbial remedy can be of great use in prevention of infections of the cervical cyst. You can take Aloe Vera juice or have a few spoonful of freshly scooped Aloe Vera gel. A mix of organic turmeric juice with ginger and cucumber can also be taken to reduce inflammation of the area surrounding the cyst.

Nabothian cyst- Risk factors

Women who are either pregnant or of childbearing age are mostly like to develop a Nabothian cyst.

Also, women who have a condition called adenoma malignum are at a risk of developing this cyst at some point of life till the onset of menopause. Adenoma malignum is a type of neoplasia that affects the mucous production in the cervix. If you are having a Nabothian cyst, you must consult your doctor about being screened for adenoma malignum.

Complications of Nabothian Cysts

There are usually no complications associated with Nabothian cysts. They are form as a complication of hysterectomy but pose no potential threat to life.

In very few cases, pap smear tests can be painful or next to impossible because of the presence of abnormally large cysts or more than one cyst on the surface of the cervix. If you get stuck in a situation like this, seek medical help and get the cysts removed immediately.

In one rarest of rare case, an abnormally big Nabothian cyst was mistaken for a malignant tumour because of which the patient was referred for hysterectomy. Fortunately for the patient, the cyst was rightly identified as a nabothian cyst using a pelvic ultrasound and was drained and removed successfully. Hence, a nabothian cyst has never really caused any potential harm or risk to the patient in any way.

Pregnancy and Nabothian Cyst

More than 50% of these cysts are diagnosed during routine pregnancy examinations. It is very common for these cysts to form during the pregnancy period.

In a normal reproductive environment, the cervix opens to allow blood during menstruation to flow from your vagina and the male sperm to enter uterus from the vaginal path. During pregnancy, the cervix shuts to keep the developing embryo intact in the uterus. After the child is born, a new tissue develops on the mucous glands and skin cells block them which results in formation of mucous-filled cysts over a period of time. This process is called metaplasia.

If you have a hint that a nabothian cyst developed in your cervix during pregnancy, then you must consult your doctor immediately. Your doctor will then suggest a proper course of treatment and surgery, if required.

Nabothian Cyst Pictures

Browse through these pictures, that will help you understand what they are and how they look like.

Picture 1 – A cervical nabothian cyst

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Picture 2 – Normal cervix vs a cervix with a cyst

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Picture 3 – Early pregnancy with nabothian cyst

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Picture 4 – Surgical removal of a cervical cyst

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Anasarca

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Anasarca Definition:- It is a medical term used to define a condition where a person experiences edema or swelling of different parts of the body due to fluid retention in various body tissues.

What is Anasarca?

It is a medical condition which is marked by swelling in different parts of the body due to excessive fluid retention in various body tissues. It is also known by other names like hydrosarca, leucophlegmatia or dropsy. The bloating caused by excessive fluid retention, makes the body look like an inflated balloon.
The main cause of the edema is accumulation of fluid in the subcutaneous tissues. When the edema is confined to a particular part of the body, it is called localized Anasarca. In a person having this condition, fluid increase of >=3-4 L is detected.
Pathology
It is similar in pathology to edema, the only difference being that it lasts for a longer duration of time and the severity is more as compared to edema.
To understand the mechanism of fluid retention, it is important to first understand the composition of the body. Almost 60-65% of our body weight comprises of water of which two-third parts likes inside the cells while one third-part lies outside the cells. Further, the fluid outside the cells is divided into interstitial fluid and plasma fluid. Interstitial fluid is present between the cells and plasma cells in present in the blood vessels. Collection of excessive fluid between the interstitial spaces is the cause of edema. There are several causes that lead to the collection of extra fluid and the same will be discussed in later part of this article.

Who is mostly affected by this condition?
There is no specific age, gender or race that is affected by this disorder. It can occur to people of any age or gender.

Anasarca Causes

There are several body mechanisms or medical conditions that can lead to fluid retention in the body. Some of them are:
– Reduced Osmotic pressure
– Increased Hydrostatic pressure
– Sodium retention
– Certain medications
– Kidney disease
– Heart failure
– Liver disease
– Malnutrition
Reduced Osmotic pressure
Plasma proteins in the body exert osmotic pressure which leads to fluid retention in the blood vessel. This is similar to the pressure exerted by magnets on iron. When there is an overall decrease in the plasma level, it leads to fluid leak into the interstitial spaces, finally resulting in fluid retention.
Increased Hydrostatic pressure
Blood is found in blood vessel which is like a tube that allows liquid to pass through its walls in order to reach the neighboring tissues. Hydrostatic pressure is defined as the pressure exerted by liquid to escape into the neighboring tissue. Thus, when there is more liquid, the pressure also increases. This usually happens due to venous stasis in which blood flows down and collects to form a pool. All conditions causing venous stasis lead to edema which finally turns into Anascara over a period of time.
Sodium retention
One of the most important organs in the human body, the kidney is responsible for regulating the concentrations of different salts in the body like sodium and potassium. An affected kidney cannot perform this function properly which leads to increased concentration of these salts.
Increased level of sodium in the body is a major cause of water retention. It leads to increased liquid in the blood, thereby increasing the hydrostatic pressure and reducing the osmotic pressure. Both these mechanisms ultimately lead to increased fluid retention in the body.
Medication
Some steroids like prednisolone lead to fluid retention in the body.
Kidney Disease or Nephrotic Syndrome
It is a disease of the kidney in children in which the glomerular membrane that acts like a sieve, starts leaking to the plasma proteins like albumin. As a result of this, excessive amount of Albumin is found in the urine which in turn reduces the osmotic pressure. All the conditions together result in edema which starts begins to affect the tissues around the eyes, giving the eyes, an inflated look. This slowly leads to Anasarca, when the protein level falls below 2.5 gm/100 ml.
This kidney problem also leads to sodium retention.
Heart failure
This is one of the most serious causes of Anasarca. When the heart fails and stops pumping blood, it results in venous stasis leading to increased hydrostatic pressure and severe edema. The fluid retention begins in the feet and ankle and spreads to other parts of the body resulting in severe Anasarca.

Liver Disease
Liver Cirrhosis is also a leading cause of severe water retention in the body. When the parenchymal cells of the liver get replaced by unwanted fibrous tissues, it leads to a decrease in the production of protein. This in turn leads to decrease in osmotic pressure, resulting in fluid retention in the body. On the other hand, fibrous tissues compress the blood vessels leading to increase in hydrostatic pressure, also resulting in fluid retention.
Malnutrition
Protein energy malnutrition is a leading cause of Anasarca in children. Kwashiorkor, a disease caused by protein malnutrition in children causes’ edema.

Anasarca Symptoms

Some of the possible symptoms of Anasarca are:
– Water retention
– Bloating or increase in the size of the abdomen
– Shortness of breath
– Swollen legs or arms
– Pain in the swollen area
– Insomnia
– Ring tightness
– Extreme fatigue
– Body weakness
– Nausea
– Puffiness
– Loss of appetite
– Bruises
– Blood pressure issues
– Difficulty in urination (especially in males)

Anasarca Diagnosis

If your edema does not seem to go away with time, then you must consult your doctor immediately. The doctor may ask questions about your medical history and prescribe various medical tests depending upon the severity of your condition. Physical examination may include tests like:
– Echocardiography
– Blood electrolyte levels
– Kidney Function Test
– Liver Function Test
– Urinalysis
The color of the urine can help in determining the severity of the disease.
– Blood albumin
This test can help the doctor spot hypoalbuminemia, which means low level of albumin levels in the blood which leads to fluid retention.
– Electrocardiogram or ECG
– X-rays

Anasarca Treatment

The selection of treatment depends on the severity of edema in patients. Different treatment methods for Anascara are:
Haemodialysis
This process uses a man-made membrane to remove excess body wastes like urea and excess water from the body. It comes very handy in eliminating excess fluids from the body.
Reduce Corticosteroid dose
This approach involves decreasing the corticosteroid dose in patients who have cardiac, liver and kidney problems.

Diuretics
These are special medicines that help in eliminating excess fluids from the body.
Albumin Infusion
In patients where protein deficiency is responsible for Anasarca, Albumin infusion is used. 25% solution of diluted Albumin is administered to patients with normal blood levels.

Anasarca Home remedies

Below are certain tried and verified home remedies that can help in reducing edema and providing relief from symptoms like bloating:
Avoid Sodium
If the patient has an underlying kidney condition, it is recommended to reduce sodium intake, in order to avoid edema.
Eat high fiber foods
Include high fiber foods like eggs, boiled white fish, lentils, lean chicken etc in your diet. This may help in reducing edema.
Exercise
Activities like walking, exercising, dieting and dancing for at least thirty to forty five minutes a day can lead to sweating which can help in reducing edema to a great extent.
Keep your feet elevated
In cases of edema, it is best to keep your feet elevated in order to increase venous arrival.

Limit fluid intake
For patients with chronic renal failure and congestive heart failure, it is important to reduce the fluid intake. Increased fluid intake can cause edema and shortness of breath.
Natural diuretics
Juniper, uva ursi, hawthorn berries and horsetails are natural diuretics that can help you get rid of edema.
Increase Potassium intake
Diuretics excrete potassium; hence patients need to keep the potassium levels at bay. Include food likes banana, potatoes, orange juice and tomatoes to maintain potassium levels.

Anasarca Pictures

Edema can affect different parts of the body. Let’s take a look at these pictures to see what edema looks like in different patients and different parts of the body:

Edema in the feet

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Edema in hands

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Edema in the face

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Petechiae

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Petechiae Definition: These are pointed, red dots that appear on the skin as a result of bleeding or broken capillary blood vessels. Bleeding causes them to appear purple or brown in color.

What is Petechiae?

Petechiae or Petechiae Skin Purpura are pin pointed red dots that appear on the skin due to bleeding within the skin or broken capillary blood vessels. These spots mostly occur as clusters and look like rashes. On pressing them, they neither change shape nor color. This is a characteristic feature of Petechiae.

Excessive coughing and vomiting that cause pressure around the face and eyes often result in purple or brown colored spots, called facial petechiae. In some cases, if blood collects under the tissues and reaches a centimeter in diameter, the affected area is known as purpura.

In most of the cases, it is not a serious condition and is caused by trauma to blood vessels on any part of the body. They are harmless spots and disappear themselves within few days. However, in some cases they may be suggestive of a more serious condition like thrombocytopenia. Any sort of injury to the face or eyes, like punching or suffocating can cause appearance of purple or brown spots. In some cases, sunburn and injuries during accidents can also cause Petechiae.

 What do Petechiae spots look like?

These spots appear as small dots like a pin prick and are usually red in color. If there is bleeding beneath the skin, the dots can change color from red to purple or brown. They do not blanch under pressure and retain their size and color.

Petechiae

Who is mostly affected by Petechiae?

There is no particular age, gender or race that is affected by this condition. It can happen to people of any age and gender. However, it is slightly more commonly seen in patients with underlying medical conditions associated with blood platelets and those facing issue with coagulation factors. Children and old aged people are more susceptible to Petechiae due to low immunity, skin problems due to ageing, strain and injury.

Petechiae Causes

They are caused due to trauma to blood vessels under the skin. These blood vessels are very small and link the tiniest part of your arteries to the tiniest part of your veins.

There are several factors that contribute to the occurrence of these spots on the body:

  • Particular medical conditions
  • Injuries
  • Persistent straining
  • Certain medications
  • Sepsis
  • Allergic Reactions
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Vitamin deficiency

Medical conditions:- They can be caused by several underlying medical conditions, both infectious and non-infectious. Some of the examples are:

  • Leukaemia:- It is a cancer of the body tissues that form blood including the bone marrow and lymphatic system. It can affect both, adults and children. Petechiae can be rarely noticed in cases of Leukaemia.
  • Thrombocytopenia:- It is a condition associated with a low platelet count. Platelets stop haemorrhage by clomping and forming lumps in blood vessel injuries. This leads to the appearance of purple or brown spots beneath the skin.
  • Infectious Diseases:- Petechiae can be caused by numerous bacterial, viral and fungal infections like:
    • Strep Throat
    • Meningococcemia
    • Mononucleosis
    • Viral haemorrhagic fever
    • Scarlet fever
    • Endocarditis
    • Pneumonia
    • Sepsis
    • Allergic Reactions
    • Autoimmune diseases
    • Vitamin Deficiency
    • Dengue
    • Congenital Syphilis
    • Ebola
    • Typhus
    • Cytomegalovirus
    • Marburg Virus
    • Hantavirus
    • Rocky mountain spotted fever
    • H1N1
    • Dukes Disease

Injuries :- Any sort of injury to the face or eyes, like punching or suffocating can cause appearance of purple or brown spots. In some cases, sunburn and injuries during accidents are also responsible for their appearance.

Persistent Straining:- Several strenuous activities can cause trauma to the blood vessels, resulting in their rupture and appearance of purple or brown spots. Some of the activities that can cause Petechiae are:

  • Excessive coughing
  • Childbirth
  • Weightlifting
  • Excessive crying
  • Vomiting
  • Choking

Medications:- These spots can also be a side effect of some particular medicines like:

  • Penicilin
  • Quinine
  • Naproxen
  • Atropine
  • Warfarin
  • Heparin
  • Carbamazepine
  • Desipramine

Sepsis:- Sepsis is a serious medical condition that results in low blood platelet count. This low platelet count in case of Sepsis can result in Petechiae.

Allergic Reactions:- Allergic purpura, which is a disease in which bleeding under the skin occurs, can also lead to bruising and formation of dark brownish spots under the skin.

Autoimmune Diseases:- Autoimmune diseases like lupus and rheumatoid arthritis are also considered among few causes. In case of Rheumatoid Arthritis, white blood cells attack the cartilage of the joints and systemic lupus erythematous causes thrombocytopenia. Both these result in purple or brown eruptions on the skin.

Vitamin Deficiency:- Nutritional deficiencies like Vitamin K, Vitamin B and Vitamin C deficiency often accompany these miniscule red or brown spots on the skin.

Petechiae Symptoms

They are often seen as tiny red, purple or brown spots on the body. They are not itchy and retain their shape, size and colour when pressure is applied on them. There are several signs and symptoms which are often seen with Petechiae:

  • Hematoma, which is a collection of clotted blood beneath the skin
  • Easy bruising or bleeding
  • Sudden or unexplained nosebleeds
  • Hemathrosis, which is also known as Joint Haemorrhage
  • Menorrhagia, which means extremely heavy discharge during menstrual periods

Characteristics of Petechiae

There are certain specific features associated with Petechiae that help in detecting them.

Color:- Mostly, the initial colour is red, which later turns into blue and purple. The final color is dark blue, dark purple or dark brown.

Size:- Their size is not more than 3 mm. They are mostly 0.5 to 1 mm in diameter. The larger versions of these tiny spots are called Purpura.

Location:- These spots mostly occur on specific places in the body like legs, face, ankles, back, thigh and shoulders.

No response to pressure:- These spots do not become flat or change their shape, if external pressure is applied on them. This characteristic feature of Petechiae helps in differentiating them from other rashes and skin spots. 

Petechiae Diagnosis

To diagnose Petechiae, your doctor may want to know more about your medical history. You can also be asked to undergo different laboratory tests like:

  • Tests that measure blood clotting abilities like Prothrombin time or Partial thromboplastin time
  • CBC or Complete Blood Count
  • Bleeding time which is the measurement of time that your blood needs in order to form a clot
  • Last and most important, Platelet count. A low platelet counts is inversely proportion to the likeliness of developing Petechiae.

Petechiae Treatment

The treatment depends on the patient’s symptoms and the root causes. Some cause specific treatments are:

Radiotherapy and Chemotherapy:- If the cause of the spots is Leukaemia, then the patient may have to undergo cancer specific treatments like radiotherapy and chemotherapy.

Blood Platelet Transfusion:- If these spots are caused by low blood platelet level, then blood platelet transfusion is the only way out.

Injury treatment:- If the cause of the problem is a specific injury or trauma to the body, then proper treatment of the injury that caused Petechiae is very important.

Eye Drops:- If the exposure to chlorine was high and your eyes have also been affected, your doctor may prescribe eye drops to decrease redness and itching in the eyes.


Antibiotic Therapy
:- If Petechiae is caused by one or more deadly infections like Septicaemia and Strep throat, then immediate hospitalization or antibiotic treatment may be required.

Home Remedies for Treating Petechiae

Below are certain tried and tested home remedies that can help you get rid of the those brown, red or purple spots beneath your skin.

Cold Compress

This is very effective in the treatment of Petechiae. It can help a great deal in reducing inflammation and overcoming the risk of these spots from recurring. All you have to do is simply wrap a towel around an ice pack or put some ice cubes in a towel and create your own ice pack. Place the cold compress on the affected for 20-30 minutes and repeat at least two times a day.

Vitamin Supplements

If the cause of the spots is vitamin deficiency, then you must keep your vitamins tip and top. You can take multi-vitamin tablets or opt for vitamin rich foods like fruits and vegetables. For example, all citrus fruits and vegetables contain Vitamin C. You can also get Vitamin B and Vitamin K supplement tablets from the medicine shop.

Avoid Trauma

Be careful and avoid any trauma to the injured area in order to avoid more spots for occurring.

Petechiae Pictures

Worried about sudden appearance of purplish-brownish spots beneath your skin? Check out these pictures to see if they match your spots!

petechiae pictures

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Fordyce Spots

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Fordyce spots Definition and meaning:- These are small, elevated, pale yellow, red or white color bumps or acnes that appears typically on the lips, shaft of the penis, the labia, scrotum and foreskin of the penis. They are also termed as Fordyce granules or Sebaceous Prominence.

What are Fordyce Spots?

Pale yellow, red or white color raised bumps that appear typically on the border of the lips, shaft of the penis, the labia, scrotum or foreskin of the penis are called Fordyce spots. They are easily noticeable and are more common in females than men. They are named after John Addison Fordyce, an American dermatologist who first discovered this condition.

These small growths are painless and are usually 3-4 millimeters in diameter. They are basically superficial sebaceous or oil-producing glands found on the wet tissue linings of particular organs, body cavities or mucosal exteriors. This ailment is known by several other names like:

  • Angiokeratoma of the scrotum
  • Sebaceous Prominence
  • Fordyce’s condition
  • Fordyce Granules

Difference between Fordyce spots and Genital Warts

These little bumps are mostly mistaken as genital warts due to their appearance and location of eruption. There are several factors that distinguish Fordyce sports from genital warts:

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Causes of Fordyce Spots

These are inflamed sebaceous glands. The function of sebaceous glands is to harvest and discharge natural oil called Sebum into the hair follicles in order to grease the skin. In case of Fordyce spots, the glands get blocked with Sebum due to the absence of hair follicles, resulting in the appearance of white bumps. This is also called Fordyce disease. These spots can occur naturally at birth but usually appear for the first time around puberty. It is found that 96% of the adolescents have Fordyce spots.

These white spots are not infectious and cannot be transmitted from people to people. People with high levels of cholesterol and triglycerides are seldom at an increased risk of having these white spots on the boundary of the lips and other organs. Very high level of fat in the body leads to an increase in production of sebum in the body, directly increasing the eruptions of Fordyce spots on the body.

Symptoms of Fordyce Spots

There are only a few peculiar symptoms of Fordyce spots. These are tiny, pale yellow, white or red spots that are found on the:

  • Vermilion border of the lips
  • Shaft of the penis
  • Scrotum
  • Labia in female

Some of the characteristics of Fordyce spots are:

Size:– These elevated spots are usually 3-4 millimeters in diameter.

Color:- Color of the bumps can vary depending upon the location of growth. The color is usually white on the vermilion border of the lips and reddish purplish in case of genital organs.

Non-itchy:- These raised spots are not rashes and are not accompanied by itching.

Painless:- There is no pain or burning sensation.

Fordyce Spots Diagnosis

Diagnosis of these spots can be done through proper physical examination. In severe cases, the dermatologist may recommend biopsy.

Since these white spots resemble various other conditions like herpes and genital warts, it is important that other similar conditions like the ones given below must be ruled out:

  • Sebaceous adenoma
  • Sebaceous carcinoma
  • Follicular infundibula tumour
  • Milia
  • Fibrous papule in the face
  • Folliculoma
  • Hirsuties papillary genitalis
  • Angiokeratoma of the vulva and scrotum
  • Molluscum contagiosum
  • Calcinosis cutis
  • Sarcoidosis
  • Acrochordon
  • Cowden disease
  • Muir-torre syndrome

Are Fordyce Spots Contagious?

These spots are not associated with any sort of infection as there is no infection causing organism like bacteria, virus and parasites associated with them. According to medical sign, if the disease is not related to any of the infectious agents, it is not contagious, hence Fordyce spots on the lips or genital organs are not contagious in nature.

Fordyce Spots Treatment

It is a normal physiological phenomenon and many doctors do not recommend treating the Fordyce spots as they themselves, go away with time. However, there are several treatments possible for them as they are a great matter of cosmetic concern, especially in females:

Electro-desiccation or Laser Therapy :- Different laser therapies like vaporising and electro-desiccation can be used to treat Fordyce spots. Electro-desiccation is also known as CO2 laser. So far, it has been successful in eliminating these white untimely eruptions in patients. The use of CO2 laser therapy with topical bichloroacetic acid trichloroacetic acid makes it more effective.

Pulsed Dye Laser :- This is another effect laser therapy which can be used to treat Fordyce spots.
In this therapy, a concentrated beam of light that converts into head is used to destroy harmful blood vessels while leaving the surrounding skin absolutely safe.

Micro Punch Technique :- This technique is used to treat various skin lesions including Fordyce bumps. It is a surgical procedure which involves removal of these spots from areas like the male genitilia. However, there are chances that the spots may occur again after a few months or years.

Topical creams and gels :- Fordyce spots can also be removed by topical creams and gels like Tretinoin. The cream, when applied to the spots several times in a day can help in reducing their size. Use of clindamycin can also help in reducing any sort of inflammation. Tretinion cream has also proved highly effective in reducing these spots.

Cryosurgery :- This method involves the destruction of Fordyce bumps using low temperatures. It is not a full proof method and there are chances that the surrounding skin may get damaged.

Phototherapy :- Use of 5-aminolevulinic acid phototherapy is very effective in reducing Fordyce spots. However, there are few side effects like burning sensation, hyperpigmentation and vesiculation that make it not very patient friendly.

Home Remedies For Fordyce Spots

Yes! There are several home remedies that can help you get rid of Fordyce Spots.

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Fordyce Spots Pictures

Check out these pictures to understand how they look like.

Fordyce spots pictures

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fordyce spots pictures

Hyperdontia (Supernumerary Teeth)

hyperdontia supernumerary teeth pictures

Hyperdontia Definition:- It is a condition which is characterized by the presence of supernumerary teeth or excessive number of teeth.

What is a Hyperdontia?

It is an oral condition which is characterized by the presence of extra teeth in individuals. These extra teeth are also called supernumerary teeth. When a normal child is born, he or she will have 20 primary teeth and 32 permanent teeth. Primary teeth are the first set of teeth that grow till the age of 36 months after the birth of a new born baby. They shed by the time the child reaches the age of 13 years. It is then that permanently teeth start growing and are fully evolved by the time your child reaches 20 years. Any child that grows more than 32 teeth is said to suffer from Hyperdontia.

It is a rare condition and the extra teeth can grow at any location or position in the oral cavity. Also, according to medical research, it is unusual for a person to have Hyperdontia without the presence of any sort of syndrome like Down’s syndrome or Gardner’s syndrome.

How does the Hyderdontia extra teeth look like?

The supernumerary teeth can be single or multiple, unilateral or bilateral or morphologically normal or deformed. Single supernumerary teeth are more commonly seen than multiple supernumerary teeth and the probability of occurrence of both the cases is 1:9. 

Is there any classification for Hyperdontia?

Hyperdontia classification can be done according to the shape and location of the supernumerary teeth.

Classification by shape

Hyperdontia or supernumerary teeth can be classified as the following on the basis of shape:

  • Conical
  • Tuberculate
  • Odontome
  • Supplemental
  • Molariform

Let’s learn more about each!

Conical Supernumerary Teeth :- These are the most common types of extra teeth present in patients with Hyperdontia. They are usually related to the middle incisors and have normal roots. Their presence can disturb the position or growth of maxillary central incisors.

Tuberculate Supernumerary Teeth :- These extra teeth have atypical roots and are not very common. They resemble the share of a drum and grow on the palatal area of the central incisors. Their growth often interrupts the growth of the incisors.

Odontome Supernumerary Teeth :- This growth is not actually a supernumerary teeth but a mass of several type of dental tissues. Some Odontome resemble a normal tooth while some appear to be unorganized dental tissues.

Supplemental Supernumerary Teeth :- They are extremely common and appear along the continuity of the alveolar line.

Molariform Supernumerary Teeth :- These supernumerary teeth have a thorough root and resemble the appearance of premolars.

Classification by location

Hyperdontia or supernumerary teeth can be classified as the following on the basis of location:

  • Paramolar
  • Mesiodens
  • Distomolar

Let’s learn more about each!

Paramolar Supernumerary Teeth :- These supernumerary teeth are located on the lingual or buccal aspects of maxillary molars. They are small and undeveloped.

Mesioden Supernumerary Teeth :- These extra teeth are located on the upper central incisors. They can be single, multiple, unilateral, bilateral, horizontal, inverted or even vertical.

Distomolar Supernumerary Teeth :- These are located on the distal aspect of the third molar. They are the second most common type of supernumerary teeth.

Diagnosis : Hyperdontia or extra teeth are easily noticeable in a normal dental check-up. The complete diagnosis can be done clinically or radiographically.  Dental X-rays are most commonly used to ascertain Hyperdontia.

Causes of Hyperdontia

Although no conclusive cause has been settled for Hyperdontia, there are several reasons and causes that can be responsible for the growth of extra teeth in individual of different ages, genders and races.

Genetics :- Some experts believe that our genes play a major role in giving rise to Hyperdontia. Research is still on and it is not clear which genes at the cause of the problem. Parents will supernumerary teeth are more likely to give birth to children who can develop these extra teeth as they grow up as compared to parents with normal teeth.

Environmental Factors :- Some experts believe that environmental factors like exposure to high level of certain harmful chemicals and radioactive substances can contribute in the presence of Hyperdontia or growth of extra teeth during the growing years in children. Research is still on to ascertain while chemical elements causes these dental changes.

Down’s syndrome :- Growth of supernumerary teeth or Hyperdontia is a characteristic feature of Down’s syndrome and the same is caused due to genetic chromosomal disorder. Children born with Down’s syndrome are highly likely to experience Hyperdontia in early stages of childhood.

Ehler-Danlos syndrome :- This heredity connective tissue disorder is one of the leading causes of Hyperdontia is children.

Cleidocranial Dysostosis :- This is also a heredity disorder that causes improper growth of bones and teeth and thus results in the presence of supernumerary teeth in children. Children with Cleidocranial Dysostosis have a missing clavicle bone.

Cleft Lip :- Cleft lip is a congenital birth defect in which the child is born with the upper lip physically separated in two with a narrow opening. Supernumerary teeth are very commonly seen in children with Cleft.

Overactive Dental Lamina :- The hyperactivity theory clearly states that Hyderdontia is caused due to an overactive dental lamina.

What are the problems associated with Hyperdontia?

There are numerous side effects or problems that people with Hyperdontia often experience.

Speech issues :- Presence of extra teeth affects the speech of a child and reduces its clarity. This indirectly affects the child’s capability to learn and express in public.

Crowding of teeth :- A person’s jaw and gum line is designed in a particular way in order to hold 32 teeth perfectly. Presence of supernumerary teeth gives rise to congestion of teeth and makes them appear inaccurate and displaced.

Trouble in chewing and biting food :- Irregular placement of teeth makes chewing and biting food a difficult task for children.

Tumour development :- Hyperdontia can increase the risk of development of cysts and tumours in early stages of childhood.

Abnormal facial appearance :- Since the teeth play a very important role in the facial features of an individual, Hyperdontia which comes with irregular positioning of teeth can result in abnormal facial appearance.

Cavity and tooth decay :- Brushing teeth is a really difficult task for people suffering from Hyperdontia. Due to absurd placement of the extra teeth, food particles remain stuck and can lead to cavity and tooth decay over a period of time.

Oral cancer :- Poor dental hygiene because of overcrowding of the teeth can lead to growth of oral cancers.

Is it a good idea to remove extra teeth in patients with Hyperdontia?

In many cases, the extra tooth does not pose any potential threat or discomfort to the patient, but there are a few situations where removal of the supernumerary tooth becomes essential.

Delayed growth of permanent teeth :- Hyperdontia or growth of extra teeth in and around the location of the permanent teeth can lead to delayed growth of the permanent teeth or even no growth in some cases.

Dislocation of normal teeth :- The supernumerary tooth that grows as a result of Hyperdontia can displaces one or more normal tooth from their position, resulting in improper alignment of the teeth.

Hyperdontia Treatment

If your child is experiencing any of the problems mentioned in the “problems associated with Hyperdontia” section, then you must consult a doctor immediately. Once the doctor is sure of the characteristics of your supernumerary teeth, he may recommend the following treatment:

Patience :- After proper diagnosis, if the doctor feels that the extra tooth does not pose any threat to the child, he may ask you to take the “Wait and Watch” approach. He will monitor the supernumerary tooth’s growth for a few months and then arrive on a conclusion.

Extraction of the extra teeth :- If the placement of the extra tooth is not very complicated, the doctor may recommend tooth extraction. It is a very simple procedure in which the doctor will extract your child’s tooth by applying local anaesthesia in the gums or area surrounding the tooth.

Orthodontic method :- After extraction of the supernumerary tooth, your doctor may recommend the use of orthodontic tools like braces and plates to ensure that the alignment of teeth is restored over a period of time as the child grows.

Endodontic method :- If the extra tooth fuses with the permanent tooth, then your doctor may have to undertake the endodontic approach. In this method, the tissue around the root of the affected permanent tooth is removed and the Hyperdontia tooth is surgically eliminated.

Hyperdontia pictures

Check out these pictures that will help you understand what supernumerary or Hyperdontia teeth look like!

hyperdontia pictures

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Swollen Lips

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What is Swollen Lips

Lip swelling means expansion of one or both lips owing to fluid accumulation or inflammation in the tissues of the lips. The lips can be swollen either on one side of the top lip, half of it, in the middle or the complete lip can get swollen. It can be sudden and can appear overnight while you are sleeping.

Lip swelling on your top lip can happen due to a number of mild to serious diseases, disorders and conditions. It can also happen from inflammation, infections, trauma or cancer.

Click here to know about Lip Discoloration

Swollen Lips Symptoms

The symptoms of swollen lips can be mild or serious. You need to different types of diagnosis to ascertain the reason behind swelling if you do not know the actual reason. The common symptoms include:

  • Numbness on the lips
  • Dry or tight lips
  • Lip distention (fat or enlarged lips)
  • Pain on your lips
  • Redness or a change in lip color (Lip discoloration)
  • Blisters or chapped lips
  • Discharges from the lips (pus or pus filled bumps)
  • Itchiness, inflammation or tingling feeling

However, these are not the only symptoms of swollen lips. You can experience some other symptoms along with lip swelling. For example, you can have lip swelling if you are suffering from fever, warmth or redness around your lips. Some of the symptoms that may occur along with lip swelling are:

  • Chapped lips
  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Change in lip color (Lip Discoloration)
  • Pain
  • Fever and Chills
  • Watery and itchy eyes
  • Pus-filled bumps or skin sores
  • Congestion (running nose)

However, lip swelling can also lead to life-threating conditions like anaphylactic reaction. If you are suffering from lip swelling and also notice some of the below mentioned symptoms, then consult your doctor quickly.

  1. Fever along with red and tender areas.
  2. Severe swelling in other part of your body
  3. Itching in the mouth or the throat
  4. Respiratory problems like shortness of breath, labored breathing, difficulty in breathing, not breathing and choking
  5. Swollen tongue
  6. Extreme distress

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Causes for Swollen Lips

The lips generally become swollen if someone experiences some kind or a trauma in the soft tissues of the lips. Other reasons include extreme weather conditions, dryness, dehydration, using poor quality lip products and nutritional deficiencies. In maximum cases, swollen lips are accompanied by bleedings and cuts in the lips that makes it difficult to eat, drink and also talk properly. However, lip swelling can vanish quickly or can last longer depending upon the cause of your illness. Lip swelling can also be caused by allergies, infections, or any kind of trauma to the lips. It can happen owing to minor conditions such as sunburn, or serious condition.

  • Infections – Lip swelling can occur if you are suffering from some kind of infections. Some of the infections that lead to lip swelling are bacterial, viral, fungal, cellulitis, herpes simplex virus infection. Oral herpes and other infections like chicken pox, measles, etc. affect your lips and cause lip swelling, blisters or inflammation.
  • Allergies – Lip swelling can also happen if you are suffering from minor to grave allergic problems such as Drug allergy (Penicillin or codeine allergy), insect bite allergy (bee sting), food allergy, have fever, having allergic reactions from dust, pollen, cosmetics or animals. Allergic reaction can also occur indirectly or without actual contact. For example inhaling something that you might be allergic to, can also cause swollen lips.
  • Trauma – Lip swelling can arise if you are suffering from some kind of a trauma or injury like hot and spicy food, oral surgery, surgery on the lip, severe sun burn, laceration, etc. Dental appliances like braces also cause temporary swelling in the lips as well as the mouth. During injury or in comes case of irritation, the lip usually gets swollen temporarily. However, it may also result in a permanent formation in some severe cases.
  • Lack of vitamins or some microelements – Vitamin deficiency can also cause a swelling in the lips. For instance, if you suffering from a deficiency of vitamin B in your body, then it would directly affect your lips and they become dry, swollen and also get covered with red spots or cracks.
  • Cheilitis – This is an illness that is caused by swollen lymphatic structures. This type of illness is rare.
  • Cellulitus: This is common to most women. Cellulitus affects your face and hence the lips also get affected. This causes an inflammation in the body tissues making your lips swollen.

Other causes that can also lead to swollen lips are:

  • Rare neurological disorder (Melkersson-Rosenthal syndrome)
  • Blood transfusion reaction
  • Acne and pimple can also cause swollen lips
  • Obesity
  • Serious genetic disorder (Hereditary angioedema)
  • Fluid retention usually occurs when you are pregnant
  • Organ failure (heart, kidney or liver)
  • Severe malnutrition
  • Serious condition of pregnancy (Preeclampsia) accompanied by high blood pressure, swelling and protein in the urine.

To diagnose the reason behind lip swelling, your doctor will ask you a number of questions that will be related to your symptoms. Every reason requires special treatment. A physician will help you to find out the real reason behind your swelling, treat you, and if required, advice you the best way to deal with it. 

What is the Treatment for Swollen Lips

You must be looking out for ways to cure your swollen or fat lips. To treat swollen lips, you can use medications prescribed by the doctor. If it is caused by allergies, then you can get antihistamines or the prescribed medicine. You can use brands like Benadryl, Zantac or Zyrtec to reduce enlargement of the lips.

Lip swelling can also be a sign of some serious or life-threatening condition so you should consult your doctor immediately if it does not get healed within a few days. However, if you experience difficulty in breathing, respiratory problem, skin or other skin tissue removal and have high fever, rashes, redness and intense distress, along with lip swelling, then seek medical help instantly.

Home Remedies for Swollen Lips

The abnormal growth of lip is easily noticeable by people and also becomes embarrassing. If swelling of your lips is causing you pain and inconvenience, then here are some fabulous home remedies to help get rid of swollen lips after you recognize the reason behind the swelling:

  • Aloe Vera – Applying freshly extracted aloe-vera gel twice or thrice a day on the affected area reduces swelling along with any kind of burning sensation occurring on the lips. This remedy is best when the swelling occurs due to an insect or a mosquito bite or if it happens from some kind of allergic reaction. Aloe Vera gel can also be mixed with tea tree oil in the ratio 2:1 and then applied as a mask on the affected lips. You can wash it off with cold water when it is dried. This process needs to be repeated several times in a day.
  • Cold Compress – This method is simple and the easiest way to treat swollen lips. Applying a cold compress quickly to the swollen area reduces swelling if it is caused by lip piercing. Put some ice-cubes in a cloth or a towel and press it gently on the swollen area for around 10 minutes. You can repeat the process until the swelling decreases.
  • Warm Water – Warm water also helps in curing swollen lips. You need to take some warm water in a bowl and dip a cloth in the water and then apply this cloth on the lips after flushing out the extra water from it. Doing it a few times in a day will reduce the swelling of your lips.
  • Honey – It contains antibacterial as well as natural healing properties to effectively cure a swollen lip. You just need to dip a cotton ball in one teaspoon of honey and apply it on the affected area for sometimes and then wash it off. Repeating the process for around two times in a day will not only reduce the swelling, inflammation and pain. It will also moisturise your lips as well. Please note that honey also contains heating properties so do not apply it for more than twenty minutes.

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  • Black Tea Bag – Applying a black tea bag also reduces swelling in the soft tissues of the lips. You just need to soak a black tea bag in warm paper and after it cools, you can apply it gently on the affected area. Black tea contains a compound called tannins that have wonderful astringent qualities.
  • Baking Soda – Very few people know that baking soda also helps in treating swollen lips and reduces the pain and the swelling. It is highly recommended when you have swollen lip caused some allergic reaction, an insect bite or blister and fever. Applying a thick paste of baking soda (three teaspoon) and water on the affected area for a few minutes and then rinse it off. It is also known to subside swelling.

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  • Turmeric – Turmeric powder is considered as an antiseptic so it helps in preventing infections. To treat swollen lips, mix a little turmeric powder with fuller’s earth and make a paste of it by pouring in some cold water. Apply this paste on the swollen area and wash it off when dry. This should be done daily to get rid of pain and swelling.
  • Witch hazel extract and salt – It is mixed in a ratio of 2:1 and contains strong anti-swelling properties. You should apply this mixture on the lips for around twenty minutes and then can wash it off with cold water. Repeat the process twice a day for best results. However, if you are allergic to plants, then please consult your doctor before using this.
  • Lip Balm – If the swelling in the lips is caused owing to dryness, then the quickest way to heal them is by applying a medicated lip balm. They contain different properties according to your chemical composition. Choose the one that would best suit you. Also check if you are not allergic to the chemical components.

It is also recommended that eating a healthy and a balanced diet with foods rich in vitamins also helps in reducing swollen lips caused due to nutritional deficiency. It generally takes around a week or two to completely heal a swollen lip.

How to Prevent Swollen Lips?

Swelling of lips can happen due to a number to reasons. So it is sometimes easier to prevent the occurrence of swelling of lips than curing them later. By following a few simple tips you will never face the problem of swollen lips:

  • First of all, you should know that you are allergic to. It is difficult to cure allergy but it is easy to stay safe from it. If you have an allergy to something, then stay away from it. Some products that generally cause allergies are nuts, fish, egg whites, sesame seeds, dairy products, latex, chocolate, pollens, bee stings. A good allergist will help you for sure. Allergy testing is often recommended by the physician to know what a person is allergic to. If you are at a risk of life-threatening allergic reaction, then doing an epinephrine auto-injector is usually encouraged.
  • Secondly, any kind of metabolism disorder generally affects your skin and especially the lips. Consult a dietician to keep your metabolism in shape and also consume healthy and nutritional products in your everyday life. Drinking enough water is necessary to keep your body fit.
  • Lastly, you can also avoid the problem of swollen lips in a number of ways. Biting lips is considered a bad habit and will be good for you. You should also use cosmetic products that will help to keep away the insects particularly in the summer months. Also avoid long kisses as biting and pressuring them can cause swelling on your lips.

Swollen Lips Pictures, images and Photo’s

swollen lips pictures

swollen lips images

swollen lips photo