South African Journal of Surgery
On-line version ISSN 2078-5151
OBJECTIVE: The aim of this trial was to determine whether one-stage excision of inflamed sebaceous cysts is preferable to the conventional method. METHODS: A group of 166 patients underwent primary resection of an inflamed sebaceous cyst followed by 5 days' administration of antibiotics. A further 185 patients underwent conventional treatment consisting of initial antibiotic administration and incision and drainage of the lesion, followed by elective surgical excision 1 - 2 months later when the inflammation had subsided. Duration of antibiotic exposure, morbidity and cost were compared between the two groups. RESULTS: One-stage excision of inflamed sebaceous cysts decreased the duration of antibiotic exposure, reduced morbidity and is more economical. CONCLUSION: This study strongly suggests that, provided cases are appropriately selected, primary resection of inflamed sebaceous cysts has advantages over conventional treatment.