Pilonidal Sinus: it’s not just any bump near your buttocks

Imagine not being able to sit down and recline on your favourite couch or lie down on your back. It can be something painful on the surface, hiding a bigger problem inside.

Published: 11th July 2019 06:37 AM  |   Last Updated: 11th July 2019 06:37 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

BENGALURU: Imagine not being able to sit down and recline on your favourite couch or lie down on your back. It can be something painful on the surface, hiding a bigger problem inside.
Understanding nature of Pilonidal Sinus

If your backside is hairy or you sweat a lot, chances are that the tiny portion right at the top of your butt crack could attract an unwarranted visitor – a pilonidal sinus, or PNS – an itchy, painful condition that can soon transform into a bigger infection, requiring immediate medical attention from a doctor who is equipped to handle such situations.

If you think it’s just another heat boil, think again. - Normal boils take care of themselves; PNS doesn’t. It needs a good pair of medical hands to resolve it. A PNS can be extremely painful, often taking shape of a cyst or abscess. It could have a bacterial infection inside.

Types of PNS
Cyst: When the boil becomes painful and then swells up with fluid or pus inside, you will have what is known as a cyst. Be careful with these kinds of PNS because, if left untreated, they’ll burst and you’ll have an endless supply of foul-smelling liquid staining your pants.
Abscess: This is when your PNS infects your tissues, causing it to swell up and develop pus inside. This also needs immediate medical attention as the infection can quickly spread and cause several problems.

How it feels
The first thing to notice is how the bump feels. While a harmless bug bite should just disappear within a matter of a few minutes or an hour, a PNS will continue being adamant, staying the way it is, with no signs of improvement. There will be pain, most definitely. This is likely to intensify when you sit or stand, or even touch the area. Lastly, if you have also fever, please get yourself tested.
This condition mostly occurs in men, especially right after puberty when there are a lot of hormonal changes. Other than that, elements like hair and sweat also contribute. One of the primary triggers of a PNS is sitting too much. Funny and odd as it might sound, if you have a job that keeps you glued to your seat for long durations, the growing hair might get pushed back into your skin. Your body reacts to this pushed-back hair as a foreign object, fighting against it, thereby causing a cyst to form in the area. Apart from sitting, the kind of fabric that comes in contact with the skin also could trigger the PNS. 

Consult a doctor
While many doctors recommend a dose of antibiotics to take care of the issue if it isn’t too bad, there are times when the PNS has taken shape of an abscess. That’s when your doctor might ask you to go in for a surgical procedure. There are several painless techniques these days that help take care of the PNS without causing you any trouble.      The author is the chief at Smiles Hospital

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