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Pilonidal Abscess

About Pilonidal Abscess

Patients can present acutely with an abscess as the first presentation of a pilonidal sinus. In the area over the tailbone there is significant pain and swelling. Inspection reveals an obvious abscess which is a collection of puss. The standard treatment is incision and drainage of the abscess usually under general anaesthesia as a day case. The abscess cavity is thoroughly irrigated and a plastic drain is placed through the wound to allow ongoing drainage over the next two to three days. At that point the drain is removed in the office. In the meantime the only requirement is regular dressings to keep the wound covered and to soak up any further discharge. Antibiotics will be prescribed by Dr Renaut and will need to be continued as instructed.

Once the drain has been removed the incision wound will heal spontaneously over the next couple of weeks and the patient will then be left with the original sinus which will need to be managed definitely once the infection has completely settled after about six to eight weeks. Very occasionally in the process of incising and draining a pilonidal abscess the sinus itself will be destroyed in the process and no further surgery is required.

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