HealthCareMagic is now Ask A Doctor - 24x7 |

Get your health question answered instantly from our pool of 18000+ doctors from over 80 specialties
159 Doctors Online

By proceeding, I accept the Terms and Conditions

Dr. Andrew Rynne
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

HCM Blog Instant Access to Doctors
HCM BlogQuestions Answered
HCM Blog Satisfaction
Article Home Skin Disorders Sebaceous cyst

Sebaceous cyst

A sebaceous cyst is a lump like lesion. It is a closed sac under the skin filled with a cheese-like or oily material.


  • Sebaceous cysts most often arise from swollen hair follicles. Skin trauma can also induce a cyst to form. A sac of cells is created into which a protein called keratin is secreted
  • These cysts are usually found on the face, neck, and trunk
  • They are usually slow- growing, painless, freely movable lumps beneath the skin
  • Occasionally, however, a cyst will become inflamed and tender


Signs & Symptoms

  • Small, non-painful lump beneath the skin, if it becomes infected, you may have redness, tenderness, or increased temperature of the skin over the area.
  • Grayish-white, cheesy, foul-smelling material may drain from the cyst.


  • Sebaceous cysts are not dangerous and can usually be ignored
  • Placing a warm moist cloth (compress) over the area may help the cyst drain and heal
  • If you have a small inflamed cyst, your doctor may inject it with a steroid medicine that reduces swelling
  • If the cyst becomes swollen, tender, or large, surgical removal may be advised