Q:

How do you treat boils and cysts?

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Quick Answer

Skin cysts that cause pain may need to be drained, injected with a cortisone medication or removed surgically, according to WebMD. To treat a boil, gently wash and dry the area twice a day and leave a warm, wet washcloth on the area for 20 to 30 minutes, three or four times a day, once you notice the boil.

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After the boil opens, continue to use the warm, wet washcloth and a bandage to cover the open wound. Keep the wound clean, if it is draining on its own, and change the bandage often, explains WebMD. If the boil does not drain on its own, a medical professional may need to lance the boil to drain it. You may receive a prescription for antibiotics from your doctor to stop the spread of infection. Call your doctor if you have a boil in addition to a fever, a lot of pain or discomfort, or diabetes, or if the boil does not go away after five to seven days of home treatment.

For an epidermoid cyst, or a sebaceous cyst, a doctor must remove the cyst in its entirety by cutting into the skin. Without proper removal, this particular cyst is likely to return. This type of cyst is noncancerous and is typically formed in a hair follicle, states WebMD. Antibiotics are typically prescribed after the removal procedure.

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