In most cases, sebaceous cyst removal means surgery. A doctor may remove the entire cyst and suture the wound shut or drain and then remove the cyst wall, allowing the wound to heal without sutures. Sometimes, however, doctors may attempt other treatments for sebaceous cysts before removing them surgically. For example, a doctor may administer injections, drain cysts, and use lasers to destroy a cyst as an alternative to using incisions to remove it.
If a person wants to have a sebaceous cyst removed entirely rather than treated, this often means surgery. In such a case, a doctor may cut the sebaceous cyst out of the surrounding tissue. In most case, this is not a complicated or serious procedure. Often, it can be accomplished in a doctor’s office and usually prevents a cyst from reoccurring.
The procedure used to remove an entire sebaceous cyst is referred to as a total excision. With a total excision, a doctor cuts the cyst out and uses sutures to close the wound. Wounds from a cyst on a patient's face typically take about a week to heal enough for a doctor to remove the sutures; for those that affect other parts of the body, it takes about two weeks. In most cases, a total excision is best performed on a cyst that is not inflamed. For this reason, doctors often try other treatments to remove inflammation before going forward with a total excision.
In some cases, sebaceous cyst removal involves a procedure referred to as minimal excision instead. To accomplish this, a doctor cuts into a cyst and drains its contents. He then extracts the cyst through the tiny incision he used to remove its contents. With this type of sebaceous cyst removal, a doctor may not use sutures. In many cases, a doctor allows this type of wound to heal on its own instead.
Laser treatments may also be used for sebaceous cyst removal. With this type of treatment, a doctor uses a laser beam to destroy the cyst. Often, this type of treatment helps to minimize the risk of scarring as well.
Sometimes a person may want to have a sebaceous cyst treated rather than removed. In such a case, he may ask his doctor for injections with a medication that is intended to reduce inflammation. This treatment is usually only applied if a cyst is not infected. Sometimes doctors may also treat a cyst by draining its contents through a small incision.