Skin tumor formations and their treatment have been a real health problem with the alarming increase in incidence in recent decades. Prolonged sun exposure, genetic inheritance, unhealthy eating, and stress are considered some of the most important triggers for the appearance and development of these tumors.
Lipomas, sebaceous cysts, and boils are diseases to which we do not give so much importance, but which can negatively affect our lives, being uncomfortable, sometimes even very painful, and certainly unsightly.
A sebaceous cyst is a type of common cyst, located under the skin. It is located mainly on the scalp, face, trunk, genitals (scrotum, lips), but can occur on any skin surface. The cause of its appearance is the blockage of the evacuation canal of the sebaceous gland, most often by the keratin in the skin. This leads to the accumulation of gland secretion (sebum – with a characteristic appearance and smell) in a sac-shaped shell, which gradually increases in size. Over time, the increase in volume or other traumas, lead to cracking of the sac and infection of the contents, which turns into a painful abscess, more difficult to treat.
The main symptom of a sebaceous cyst is a small swelling under the skin that is usually not painful. In some cases, the sebaceous cyst can become inflamed and sensitive to touch. The skin in the area of a cyst can be red and warm, and a white-gray liquid with a cheesy and smelly appearance could come out of it.
Sebaceous cyst is also known as an epidermoid cyst. One way to remove this type of cyst is through surgery while another option includes noninvasive removal where doctors drain it with a needle first before sucking out its contents completely by suctioning them into an attached syringe, without removing any tissue at all.
How much does sebaceous cyst removal cost?
Treating it without health insurance can cost up to $370 per sebaceous cyst, depending on the location and size of the individual’s affected areas. While this price range is certainly expensive for someone who cannot afford it, there are other options available if one decides not to go with surgery.
Before your doctor can say whether or not you have a cyst, you have to take into consideration the cost of an office visit without any tests being performed which can be somewhere between $85 and $170.
If you have health insurance, you can talk with your provider to see if a procedure like this one is covered. If it’s covered, the costs will be quite low since you’re responsible for only the deductible and/or copay fees. It is important to know that insurance companies won’t do any procedures unless the doctor deems them medically necessary.
Dr. David Hansen said that the cost of the initial visit is around $90 and cyst removal can be anywhere from $185 to $360 depending on factors like size or location.
On SteadyHealth.com forum members said they had paid around $210 to extract a single cyst at their local doctor’s office and up to $1,550 for more than three cysts removed in one surgery.
Sebaceous cyst removal details
A diagnosis is performed by the doctor before any surgery to confirm it. This usually involves visually inspecting the area in question and asking relevant questions about how it has been acting, what other symptoms have occurred recently, etc.
The treatment of sebaceous cyst is surgical and consists of its excision and suturing of the skin, the intervention being carried out with local anesthesia. The removal of the sutures is done at 7 days in case of lesions from the facial region and at 14 days for the rest of the localizations. Proper excision involves the complete removal of the gland, thus avoiding the risk of recurrence. Surgical treatment of infected sebaceous cyst is much more difficult than simply excising the uninfected cyst because in the infected form connections are established between the gland and the surrounding cellular tissue, making it much more difficult to excise completely.
The doctor should let you drive home after the appointment as long as they have used local anesthesia.
All excised formations are examined under a microscope (histopathological examination), although most cysts are benign.
What are the extra costs?
In order for the surgery to heal as fast as possible, the doctor may prescribe medicine. Also if there was an infection, medical treatment is necessary.
Important things to consider
If left untreated, the cyst will grow larger and may become infected with bacteria. If this were to happen, it’s so important to see a doctor in order to prevent the situation from getting worse. Even if they aren’t causing problems right now, these cysts won’t go away on their own; rather than occurring spontaneously as most people think (even though that’s technically impossible), they’ll continue growing until rupturing.
If you want to know how much the procedure will cost, ask for an insurance code beforehand and check with your insurer. They should be able to let you know if it’s covered and how much it would set back in out-of-pocket expenses.
How can I save money?
Sebaceous cysts are harmless but may require medical treatment. It is best to ask your insurance provider if they can cover the costs for you, as some companies refuse to pay because sebaceous cysts can be considered non-essential or cosmetic.