FTM/N Top Surgery: Ingrown Hairs & Cysts

Ingrown hairs and cysts that can develop in anyone, not just folks who are hormone replacement therapy or have had F2M/N (FTM/N) top surgery. You can find very detailed information about ingrown hairs and cysts on our portion of the website about acne. In this article, we’re going to focus on how they relate to F2M (FTM/N) top surgery.

What are Ingrown Hairs & Cysts?

An ingrown hair is a hair that has curled around and grown back into the skin instead of growing up and out of the skin. It usually creates a raised, red bump (a cyst). Causes can include a clogged hair follicle or a very close shave.

Top Surgery Incisions: Ingrown Hairs & Cysts

In the case of top surgery incisions (also any other surgical incision), an ingrown hair can occasionally occur in the scar tissue, or in the region around the areola / nipple graft. Scars are made of collagen, which does not produce oil or hair. However, nearby hair follicles may produce a hair that penetrates the scar tissue. This hair, just like any other hair, has the potential to become ingrown. Sometimes, ingrown hairs can transform into a larger pimple-like bump. The resulting red, white, or yellow cyst will likely be painful to the touch.

How Do Ingrown Hairs & Cysts Affect Your Surgical Results?

It’s possible that any prolonged inflammation or open area will lead to a widened or thick scar in that area.  Therefore, it’s advisable to take a few simple steps to try to alleviate the inflammation and allow the open area to heal as soon as one can.

Treating Ingrown Hairs and Cysts

To reduce inflammation, lower risk for infection, and prevent further scarring do not pick at or pop an ingrown hair or cyst. Gently wash with a warm, wet washcloth (also called a ‘warm compress’) a couple times a day for 5-10 minutes at time. If it does not go away, or you see signs of worsening infection (increasing redness or increased pain) consult your doctor. They may drain the cyst and remove the hair or potentially treat the infection with antibiotics.