Pilonidal Cysts and Pilonidal Cyst Surgery

No such thing as a pilonidal cyst

While many doctors and patients commonly call the condition a ‘pilonidal cyst’, the term is a misnomer and indicates a misunderstanding of the disease.

For the term ‘pilonidal cyst’ to be correct, there must be an infected glandular cyst present, which is lined by epithelium (like skin). However, cysts are not present in pilonidal disease and there is no such thing as a ‘pilonidal cyst’.

Pilonidal disease is an acquired disease, not a congenital problem. Those who properly understand pilonidal disease realize that it is really an abscess of the skin and subcutaneous tissue (the tissue under the skin) of the natal cleft.

WebMD, the Mayo Clinic, and Wikipedia all incorrectly use the term ‘pilonidal cyst’ rather than ‘pilonidal disease’ and refer to surgical procedures for this problem as pilonidal cyst surgery.

Location
The Sternberg Clinic
77 Van Ness Avenue, Suite 302
Civic Center, Hayes Valley

San Francisco, CA 94102
Phone: 415-821-8000
Office Hours

Get in touch

415-821-8000

Jeffrey Sternberg, MD, FACS, FASCRS
77 Van Ness Avenue
Suite 302
San Francisco, CA 94102