View Full Version : Pain in the Arse

02-21-2007, 11:28
Love this site.. I've been able to find answers and thoughtful debate on just about every topic under the sun. Anyway, I'm planning on a SOBO thru this summer. I do have one big concern that I can't find any info on.
I have a history of pilonidal sinus infections, aka pilonidal cyst or abscess. I'm worried that sleeping on the ground and away from regular hot showers for an extended time is going to cause another flare up. If anybody has experienced this or knows someone who has, they will probably understand how troubling this possibility can be.
As I see it my options are: 1) Leave it alone and hope for the best. or 2) have it surgically removed (while still insured) and hope that it heals in time (about 3 months from now).
Does anybody have any experience or advice on this subject?

02-21-2007, 11:31
The trail will always be there. Take care of your health first and foremost.

Swiss Roll
02-21-2007, 11:51
Get the surgery. A couple of years ago I started having chronic sinus infections. It got so bad that antibiotics wouldn't even touch it and I was so tired all of the time, all I did was go to work and come home and sleep. My ENT told me that the condition can even trigger asthma-type symptoms, which I was having and which kept me from biking and hiking much. Long story short, I got the surgery (windows and septoplasty) and yes, it took a good 4-6 months before I felt completely healed (Notice I said completely, I felt much better within 3 months.) The thing is, I didn't know how sick I was until after I healed, the infections don't knock you out of commission, they just suck out your energy. I haven't had an infection since, my asthma-symptoms are gone, I have more energy, I don't even get as many colds and because of the windows, I rarely get congested. Do it and enjoy your hike much more. Good luck.

02-21-2007, 12:26
"pilonidal sinus infections, aka pilonidal cyst or abscess"
I work in a hospital lab and have no clue what that is. Regardless, I would use the health insurance and heal now. You could always push back your start time a couple weeks too.

jet airliner
02-21-2007, 12:42
Getting the surgery done ASAP will increase the odds that you will be able to do your hike this summer. I have assisted many times on these surgeries and it is not that big of a deal. It can be done on an outpatient basis and usually under local anesthetic. Depending on the type of procedure the surgeon performs, recovery can take anywhere from 3-6 weeks. You can google it to get more info.

P.S. The pilonidal sinus is located at the base of the spine, right above the crack.

02-21-2007, 13:54
Thanks for all the helpful advice. I've needed to have it lanced and drained twice in the past 5 years (usually only slows me down for a week or two), and don't want to have to worry about a reaccurance on the trail. This is why I'm considering the cysectomy. I'm just nervous because I've been reading some horror stories online about people who have had this procedure and spent months and even up to a year or two recovering only to have it still come back to haunt them.
P.S. Hoping my trail name does not become Cyst-boy.

Swiss Roll
02-21-2007, 14:25
Well I feel like an idiot. When you said sinus I automatically thought the kind in your head. Nevertheless, go ahead and get the surgery and be done with it. Good luck.

jet airliner
02-21-2007, 15:01
Some good info here:


02-21-2007, 15:04
get the surgery. I just had a bone spur removed and a cataract removed. It set me back a month from my start date but now I have no worries. I have also been paying the insurance company $1,300/month for the last 10 years so figured it could be my parting gift from them.

02-21-2007, 15:21
My hubby had this. Had surgery in the MD office. Still came back. Several times.

The way he got it cured. Me! (I'm a nurse too) :)

How? I packed it with betadine strips so it healed from the inside out. Never had a problem with it since and that was 18 years ago.

02-21-2007, 16:01
Thats funny, they called it a "natal cleft" aka butt crack. At work (Duke university hosp) they call it a gluteal cleft or gluteal fold. Everytime we receive a specimen (in the microbiology lab) from that area we laugh at the medical terminology.
Now that I know what it is, I would get the surgery since it will have to happen eventually.
Good luck with your surgery (or not),

02-21-2007, 18:06
Thanks Jet, that's a great website

02-21-2007, 18:54
Gotta have a sense of humor about ass-afflictions. They are so horribly lifestyle annoyances you've just gotta keep your perspective. My family has a long history of Crone's, colitis, etc.....

I'm thinking Assman, Assmaster, Buttboy, Crackcreature, DerriereDemon, HeineHiker, KeesterKreeper...this is fun...what else???