Dr. Sandra Lee’s Latest Cyst!

A Pilar Cyst, aka a trichilemmal cyst, an isthmus-catagen cyst, or a “wen”, looks identical on examination to the more common epidermoid cyst, except that 90% of them occur on the scalp. They tend to be more mobile and firmer than epidermoid cysts, and are derived from a different part of the hair follicle/skin. The internal content tend to be more “homogenous”/ smooth (looks different under the microscope), but it is also a benign growth. It is not uncommon to have multiple pilar cysts on the scalp and to have other family members to have these cysts (tend to run in families). Treatment is for cosmetic reasons usually (people don’t like the appearance of them), and excision with removal of the cyst and it’s contents is curative.