What Is A Pilonidal Sinus, What Causes Them And What Are The Symptoms Of Pilonidal Sinus?

A small pit that appears on the bottom of the tailbone or coccyx that can be filled with pus and infected is known as pilonidal sinus. The word pilonidal actually means ‘nest of hairs’. And then why it is called pilonidal sinus? –Because the pilonidal tract is a sinus that has hairs and it is under the skin between the buttocks (above the anus). But in other parts of the body the pilonidal sinus can appear as well.

What is the actual cause of the pilonidal sinus is still not proven scientifically but there are some thoughts about this. Some believe that it can be a minor abnormality that a person is born with and this is linked with the fact that there are more family members with this problem. Others believe that the development of skin dimples that is a result of friction that caused damage to the small structures below the skin (responsible for making hairs) and due to the local pressure in your skin pits the growing hair in the natal cleft can be pushed. There will be inflammation and irritation when the hair fragments are being stuck there. And this can be the cause for the pilonidal sinus.

Here are the factors that might increase the risk of this condition:

-family history of the condition;
-injury or previous irritation to the affected area;
-job that requires long hours of sitting;
-having hairy, deep natal cleft.

The symptoms are not noticeable immediately after having it but afterwards they can be ‘acute’ or chronic. The first thing that people notice is the painless lump at the affected area. After a while you will start having pain because the skin infection is developing. And until the sinus is tread, you will have the pain and discharge.

How to treat it?
If there are chronic symptoms, the solution is operation. Plastic surgery, excision and primary closure or wide excision and healing by secondary intention are the solutions here.

If there are no symptoms at all then you should only shave or to use different methods of hair removing. Also that area should be clean always.

If there are rapid-onset or acute symptoms you will need to take antibiotics and painkillers such as ibuprofen and paracetamol.