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Itchy sore skin above butt?

I have developed an itchy sore patch in the cleft of my buttocks where the two halves of the buttocks come together several inches above the anus.  It looks like an enlarged pore with pus coming out.  There is also a lot of swelling. What are the possible causes of this?

Expert Answers (1)

Pilonidal cyst

The area at the top of the 'butt crack' where the tail bone (coccyx) is located is called the natal cleft. Sometimes a cyst or abscess containing ingrown hair and skin cells will form in the natal cleft.  This is called a pilonidal (nest of hair) cyst.The majority of patients with a pilonidal cyst are males ranging in age from 14 to 35.

When a hair follicle begins to become blocked, an immune reaction will cause swelling, which closes the skin pores.  This area often becomes swollen, red, pus-filled, and infected.

It is thought that excessive sitting or sweating can contribute to the development of pilonidal cysts. Genetics may also be a risk factor in some patients. Some patients will feel an itchy pain while others may feel no symptoms at all. Pilonidal cysts are usually treated with antibiotics, such as erythromycin or metronidazole. In more severe cases, surgery is a required treatment method.  However, chronic cysts can recur frequently in some patients even after surgery.  Also, up to 40% of patients may have delayed wound healing that can extend several months.



July 8, 2010

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