PRID Drawing Salve?

Hello fellow sufferers!

I read about 75% of this website before I decided to post...and I am only doing so because I am utterly confused. As I understand it, pilonidal cysts affect everyone differently and I am looking for some insight from anyone who went through something similar.

A few months before I turned 19 was when I first butted (no pun intended) heads with this cyst. It's like it just came out of nowhere so I went to a doctor and he told me that this cyst was most likely caused by an infection of a hair follicle and that all he needed to do was just cut it, drain it, and that would be the end of that. That's exactly what happened. The procedure wasn't particularly painful (though I am very hazy on the details) and I got healed up a few days later, thinking that I would never have to worry about this again. I was wrong.

A few days ago, I started feeling a bump in the same spot as the cyst from 3 years ago but didn't think much of it. It wasn't particularly painful and I thought it would just go away. It only grew to be more painful and swelled up as the days went on. I strongly considered going to a doctor to get this thing cut open again but thought that there must be a home remedy I can try.

The first thing I did was soak it with hot water during my shower. Then when that didn't help much, my fiance and I went to a local WalMart to find heat patches (the kind you put on a sore muscle) and gauze...I wound up accidentally stumbling onto something called PRID Drawing Salve and my fiance told me that it should help bring the cyst to a head, so I bought it too (super cheap, btw - only $4)

My wonderful fiance applied this salve on my sore behind in the morning, covered it with gauze, taped me up, and then I put a heating patch on top of the gauze for the heat to help draw it out. The pain only got worse after a day of doing this, but I felt that the cyst was moving was trying to get deeper into my butt crack and up closer to my spine. That same day, I developed a low-grade fever which went away after a few hours. My immune system is usually great and I rarely get colds (*knock on wood*) or anything else, but this weird fever surprised me.

Yesterday (3 days after I first started feeling the pain), in sheer desperation, I took a spoon and scraped this gooey sticky salve and completely covered the cyst with it underneath the gauze, in hopes that it'll finally make the cyst burst. After taking a few Excedrins, I spent an evening without pain. But right before I went to bed, the pain got worse than it ever was before. There was no position I could assume in bed for it to go away. Last night, I was awake ALL NIGHT in bed and was crying at times because of the pain. I felt nauseous and didn't know why...and every time I breathed through my nose, I smelled something really disgusting.

This morning (after the longest night ever), I noticed that the cyst finally burst and I didn't have much pain at all. I can sit, stand, walk around freely... Not sure of the color of the discharge because the salve I used is brown, but my fiance said that it definitely burst and you could tell. I was soooo happy!

Now I'm concerned about the drainage. I hope it doesn't drain for long.

Has anyone else developed a low-grade fever before the cyst finally split or used Drawing Salve? Has it helped you in the recovery process? I model for a living and I can't have a bandage on my ass for months while this thing is draining. :/


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Sorry to hear about your terrible experience. I too had a veey sleepless night with my flare up in January, intense pain and it drove me mad. I felt slightly feverish for a few hours but it passed. Next morning I went to the hospital and it started draining when I got home. I had pus for about 3 days, a hot moist flannel pressed brought it out regularly, then I continued to drain serous fluid for the rest of the week. After that it dried up. The only thing I put on it was hibicleans, to keep it clean. I figured the skin around it had been given a constant bacteria bath while it drained.

Some people do tell of draining for ages, but I wanted to let you know how I found things developed. I am pleased for you that the pain has mellowed, isn't it great when it drains and you get that very welcome break!


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Oh and welcome to the boards! Keep us updated with your progress x


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The salve may help it burst or come to a head, but if you had it lanced without having the pits removed it's most likely just going to keep coming back.
Hound - thank you very much for the warm welcome and the prompt response! Has it come back since then? Was it the first time you've encountered a pilonidal?

Pita - that is something I certainly fear happening again. I don't know why the doctor I saw the first time around didn't just take them out...He never even mentioned them. He just said that the only thing he can do is cut it open and drain it, and that is all. I really do not like any kind of surgical procedures and feel that our bodies can heal themselves without invasive procedures.My case of Pilonidal isn't as extreme as a lot of other people on this board and I consider myself very lucky in that regard.


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Hi Sunfish
I had been living with a very small Pilonidal for 15 years, it never caused any real pain, it came up only a few times in all those years and reliably drained easily and went to sleep for long periods. this flare up in January caused me a world of pain and it did go away, but I saw a surgeon who told me it had two pits now and to expect future flare ups. I took the decision to have the surgery on my own terms rather than live the risk of a bad flare up overseas on holiday, or being rushed to the ER and having emergency excision by a junior surgeon. I knew that one day I would need surgical intervention and decided to go for something that may cure it for good at a time that suited me.

I do agree that the body is an incredible machine, it can heal itself of most things and I love complimentary therapies, but in the case of a Pilo there is a flaw in the body that cannot be fixed without surgical intervention. Some people are lucky and their pilo lies dormant for years or decades, and there is some evidence that humans can outgrow the problem in midlife.

I would say you need to judge based on the damage being done to the quality of your life versus the trauma of surgery. By all means try managing it, you will know in your heart when it is time to face surgery if that time comes. The decision might be made for you if you end up in the ER or you might happily live your life just managing the odd flare up here and there. Nobody here can answer that for you, as there are no right and wrong decisions, just those that are right in your individual case. In a way it is like making a bet, you can pit your chips on living with it along with the odds of it being easily managed, or place them on surgery with the odds of a cure. You need to place your chips where makes the most sense to you at this time.

I hope this helps just a little, we are here for you and we can battle this thing together.
Hound, your response was PERFECT. Thank you very much for your insight!

The only true pain I encountered was right before it was about to burst open, so it doesn't look like it'll be too much of a problem in my life.


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The only extra thing I would say is that, if you try to manage it, do not shrug off a fever. Sepsis is a very serious condition and you should seek emergency medical help. If you do get a fever again, don't ignore it. I don't want to scare you, but I also realised that I may have given the impression that fever was a normal part of a flare up. I was daft really to wait until it passed and should have got out of bed and called for help. Learning about this disease is a massive advantage, knowing what is ok and what is not is important, especially so if you go for a 'living with it' approach. A fever is your body going into emergency mode, listen to your body and what it tells you. Forewarned is forearmed they say :)

Keep us updated on how you progress on your journey.
Hound - WOW! That certainly paints a much different picture. My fiance keeps 'hounding' me (hehehe) to go to the doctor, so maybe I should just listen to him. My birthday is on Monday and I don't want to spend it being sick. I will take his (and your) advice and just go to the doctor. Right now, I am also experiencing random bouts of nausea and...well, other things that accompany nausea...and they are truly disgusting. I have never felt sick like this. To be honest, I'm not sure if one has to do with the other, but what are the chances that I am slammed with a few different things at once when I barely get sick in the first place? I will make an appointment for as soon as I can and will go from there.

Hmmm...not sure if I should schedule it for tomorrow or for after my birthday. Decisions, decisions.

EDIT: The more I read about sepsis, the more it sounds like I'm developing it. I had a fever, chills, rapid heart beat, overall anxiety at times, and warm skin. Hmmm...maybe I should go to the doctor sooner rather than later.
I just called my doctor and she said that all of my symptoms DO sound like sepsis. I really don't want to curse, but FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUDGE!!!!

She just called my pharmacy so they'll hook me up with a round of antibiotics until I see her tomorrow in the afternoon. This really sucks. I had no idea that you can develop blood poisoning from a pilonidal. If I did, I sure as hell would've taken it more seriously. Hound, thank you very much for letting me know this valuable information. As of now, I can't wait for my doctor's appointment.


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Sorry to hear this, I didn't realise you had other symptoms currently besides pilo pain and drainage, I was thinking of more for future flare ups, but with those symptoms now yes get to a doctor to put your mind at rest.


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Sorry we cross posted, great get the antibio's going and let us know how you get on when you see her.
Doctor prescribed me a 10-day regimen of Avelox, which I was told is the strongest antibiotic on the market and should only be used when other antibiotics have failed. The possible side effects scared the crap out of me, but I'd rather take the pills than to let my blood be poisoned. I had no idea that blood poisoning was even possible from a pilonidal, as I've never heard of any cases where sepsis occurred. I chatted with the pharmacist for a while about the medication and also about the sepsis. She's never heard of pilonidal cysts, but when I explained what it was and where it was located, she said it's definitely very possible that it could cause sepsis (I assume it's because of the wound's proximity to the spine).

I already took the first pill last night so we will see what happens when I give a blood sample at the doc's today. I've got to admit...I'm really scared.

BUT - good news! My fiance checked on the abscess today and he said it's looking even better than before. He said it's smaller, not as red, and seems to be hardening up a little bit. At least I hope that's good news. I hope my doctor knows something about pit-picking so she can just do that at my appointment today...we'll see.


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I'm thinking of you, I am not a doctor, just a nutritionist, but I would think that your doctor would have had you straight in the ER if it looked serious. Try not to worry too much, I know it is hard. My understanding of sepsis is that it is not uncommon with any abscess, I know people with a tooth abscess who had minor sepsis, they were fine after getting the right drugs. I had two different strong antibiotics when I had my bad flare up, I guess they could have fought off any infection I had after the fever. it is easy to focus on the worst thing that could possibly happen, however you are getting medical care and I am sure that they will get answers for you. Ask lots of questions and share your worries with your doctor, she is there to help with the worry as well as the symptoms.

I am glad that your abscess seems smaller and more settled, good luck this afternoon, I am sending you healing thoughts.
Hound, thank you so much for being nice, knowledgeable, and most of all, caring. Who knew that such a weird health flaw would bring people together...

I am hoping that it's nothing serious, and you're right, it's easy to focus on the negatives. I slept on the futon in my living room last night, as the antibiotics made me drowsy almost immediately, and my fiance slept right beside me to make sure I was okay all night long. With all of these health problems, I consider myself incredibly lucky to not be working a desk job or another 9 to 5. I basically work for myself and can take off any day (or days, in this case) I want. If I worked a desk job, there is no way I wouldn't be fired for missing all of this time, because I've been out of commission for almost a week now and who knows how much longer I'll be sick. That's my positive thought for now...


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You are welcome, to me this is what this board is all about, sharing experiences and mutual support. Although I have had my pilo for many years, I am still new to knowing about it. I only got correctly diagnosed recently and then set about reading everything possible about it. This site has been the best source of help, both chatting with others and reading all the resoirces. It is a massive help to those of us fighting this very frustrating condition. It sounds like your fiancé is a gem, this must be tough on you both.

I missed a week of work in January with my flare up, and so far I am 3 weeks post surgery off work. I am going back to work next week. You are truly lucky to have flexibility with work, I have an understanding employer but for many it is another big concern to add to the plenty we have with the illness. Its true, another positive right there! :)
Hound, he is not only a gem, but he is a whopping 10 karat diamond! He is confident enough for the two of us that this thing will pass with no complications. I wish I had that strength!

Doctor's appointment at 5pm today. I'll let you know what my doc says. :)


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Are you sure it was sepsis? That usually lands people in the er. Not trying to doubt you, but I'm pretty sure I've had low grade fevers from it before I got cured.
My doctor said I had all of the symptoms...she also said that people land in the ER when they go into shock, which means their immune system was very weak. As I said before, my immune system is pretty strong so I can fight it off myself with the help of the antibiotics. In other words, if my doctor didn't think I had it, she wouldn't have prescribed me the strongest antibiotic on the market. Also, keep in mind that this lady isn't just some doctor, but has been listed time and time again as being in the Top 10 family doctors in all of the United States. :)


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Sounds like she set your mind at rest a little, did she look at the abscess?