Pimple/Boil/Cyst? Something outta control . Update

Hound dog

Nana's are Beautiful
I'm not trying to gross anyone out here.

But about a week ago I noticed what I thought was a pimple on my forhead that hadn't come to a head. Not more than the size of an eraser on the end of a pencil. I pretty much left the thing alone.

This weekend we had a yard sale. I sat directly in the sun for 2 solid days. Although it wasn't hot, we all know how warm the sun can feel on your skin.

Sat night it had gotten about the size of a quarter. I squeezed to see if there was a head, then cleaned it well. Next morning it was the size of a half dollar. Did the same, it did drain clear fluid and I cleaned it well. By monday morning my forhead looked like someone had smacked me with a 2 by 4. The thing is huge. I scrubbed it well. Monday nite I notice some swelling at the bridge of my nose as well.

Yesterday morning the swelling was more pronouced and getting painful. So again I try draining the thing. It drained ALOT. I scrubbed it well and left it alone. The swelling around it moved down the bridge of my nose to the point my eyes now look slanted. Last night I got so desperate I put ice on the darn thing. It did help the swelling go down some.

Now I'm sitting here with this big whooping ugly thing on my forhead. The swelling is still there, it has now moved to under my eyes, more the left than right. It is to the point where my left eye keeps tearing up from the pressure. I am scared to attempt to drain the darn thing again or even to scrub it for fear the swelling will get worse.

I haven't shown my face in public since sat. :frown:

I'm now wondering if this might be some sort of bite?? Although if it is I'm not aware of being bitten by anything. I'm not familiar with boils. But while I've had cysts I've cared for myself in the past I've never had one cause this type of swelling before. (honestly, I'm barely applying pressure when I drain it, it's just too painful)

Oddly enough it doesn't appear infected. With all of the Noxema, achne stuff, and anitbacterial soap I've used on it I don't see how it can be. I've also tried hot compresses but to no avail. It seems to make it worse.

I'd make a trip to fam doctor but we don't have insur, and the cost last time was astronomical. I may be making an embarrassing trip to the ER if this doesn't start clearing up.

Any ideas or help????? :sad:


Roll With It
Could your easy child Melissa look at it? Or a friend with more medical experience? The growth rate seems alarming, as does the size.

STOP TRYING TO POP IT!!!!! From your post it seems that each time you try to pop it the darn thing grows hugely.

At the very least go to the health food store and see if they have anything that could help. But it is getting to the point where you may very well need medical treatment.

Gentle hugs,


Hound dog

Nana's are Beautiful
Thanks Susie.

No I won't be doing anymore popping, or even attempting to.

Melissa looked at it this morning. She agrees it doesn't appear infected. But isn't sure exactly what it is either. But then she didn't take a real close look. And she doesn't see this sort of thing in the Unit where she works.

I did some o/l searches and think it might be a boil. Symptoms sound about right. Although I'm hesitant to try the hot compresses again as the swelling is now under my eyes and I worry it might make it worse. Weird thing is the swelling on the forhead seems to have improved.

But the darn thing is quite painful.

Ugh!!! :faint:


Active Member
Warning - possible gross-out factor to this post.

This does sound like a boil. A boil IS a bacterial infection. The degree of pain also sounds like a staph infection. Have a close look at it - is the margin smooth, or is the margin white, a bit irregular, and looking a bit soggy and moist? Is there moist dead skin sloughing off from the margin? Is it warmer to the touch over and around this thing, than surrounding tissue?

Most important - keep ANYTHING that touches this, as clean as possible. Especially your fingers. I do think you should cover this thing, to make sure it stays as clean as possible. On your forehead, hair can brush across it, you can't help touching it sometimes, breezes can blow dust etc into it. If you cover it with a gauze dressing, at least you're keeping the thing clean, and also preventing transferring any possible contaminant/infective agent from boil to fingers and back again.

I'm not saying this IS a boil, and I am also very concerned about how fast it's grown (but staph can do this - and we have staph in our skins all the time, but sometimes it gets away a bit more than usual). I'm also concerned that this could be a combined attack by more than one type of bacterium. For example, staph A & strep B are a particularly nasty partnership when they burrow into the skin and tissues. Do you have a sore throat at the moment, or anyone in the family or at work? Not that it's something you could necessarily be sure of.

If the thing looks fairly clean and not soggy, I'm not so worried; but when the margin of skin sloughs off white and it looks like there's a pocket around the edge under the skin, you need to get it seen to fast because it will keep on growing, sometimes fast, until seen to. And the larger it grows, the bigger the scar it could leave.

Don't be embarrassed at having picked at it - if my theory is right, you probably haven't made it worse, you've probably eased your pain level, in fact - but cover it, then go to the emergency and let someone check it out. Don't be too embarrassed about it. Antiseptics won't stop such an infection, it needs oral (and often topical) antibiotics.

It could have started from a bite. It could have started from a scratch. It could have started from a pimple. But I think it's not what it used to be any more.


Hound dog

Nana's are Beautiful
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">If the thing looks fairly clean and not soggy, I'm not so worried; but when the margin of skin sloughs off white and it looks like there's a pocket around the edge under the skin, you need to get it seen to fast because it will keep on growing, sometimes fast, until seen to. And the larger it grows, the bigger the scar it could leave.

Marg it is clean and not the least bit soggy. Actually the skin is pretty dried out and feeling tight. It doesn't seem any warmer to the touch than the surrounding area. Looks like a scab surrounded by swelling. However the swelling in the forhead is greatly reduced this morning, and even a bit has gone down surrounding the eyes, although it hasn't completely gone away. No sore throat. None going around husband's work that he knows of. If it weren't for the remaining puffiness of the bridge of the nose and under the eyes I'd be thinking it was actually clearing up.So hopefully it is.

I'll keep it covered up and clean, as well as watch for what you describe. thanks :smile:


Active Member
My father in law had something similar and it turned out to be shingles, which when anywhere on the face could mean if not treated properly <span style='font-size: 14pt'> can lead to blindness </span>. I'd get to the doctor. Shingles are painful and the degree of pain and the fact that it's spreading leads me to believe this is a good possibility. Go check. I wouldn't bother with the ER, as they may not be able to diagnosis. Besides, that would be more expensive than an $80.00 trip to doctor.


Former desparate mom
Listen to me Lisa, anything that close to your sinuses and your BRAIN must be looked at. I have seen more that one case of brain infection secondary to an infection on the face/sinus etc.

Go to the doctor, actually at this point the ER may be the way to go. Tell them you want to make sure you aren't A) bitten by an exotic creature B) spreading an infection to your brain.

Go Today!


Well-Known Member
Don't you have a free clinic or urgent care facility nearby?

You really need to get this looked at. If for nothing else, you could be scarred for life.
I knew someone that had a similar growth around the jaw and it got to the point he could not move his mouth at all. You are messing with your vision!

Get to a doctor ASAP!!! No matter the cost - you are worth it!


No real answers to life..
Have you been hanging out with aliens? Sounds like something from the X-files.......

Go to the doctor, sounds like something you don't want to mess with.....

And if something pops out of it, get out of the room .....fast.....

Hound dog

Nana's are Beautiful
I wish I could get into the doctor but I can't. The office charges by how long an uninsured patient sits in the office ontop of what is done for said patient. Last time it cost me nearly 500.00! And that was just for a TB skin test and 2 booster vaccines! I can imagine what it would be this time. And yes I threw a hissy fit, but still had to pay it.

I have to wait til Nichole's last class is over to head to the ER. I'm the only one to watch the baby. husband has left for work, and easy child and Nichole's b/f are also in class today. (in Dayton) She gets out of class at 3:30.

I thought it was getting better. But I laid down for a nap this morning and woke to the right eye and under it swollen, as well and the left back to original level of swelling.

Won't go to our ER. They're dumb as a box of rocks. I'll have to drive to easy child's hospital in another town.

:rofl: WhymeMom

This is too weird. Can you have shingles without ever having had the chicken pox??

I'll keep you updated.


Well-Known Member
Staff member

I agree with the others. Stop playing around with this and get to the ER ASAP! It sounds like it is growing exponentially.

I'm worried about you. Let us know what the docs say.

On the lighter side ~ Whymemom, it does sound like there is an alien growing in there. Remember the first Alien movie when the alien burst out of her stomach? I hope that doesn't happen to Lisa. :grin:



Active Member
Daisylover--you cannot have shingles if you have never had chicken pox. shingles is a form of chicken pox that is "stored" (for lack of better word) in the nerves and reoccurs as shingles. You can get chicken pox from the shingles, I did at 30 yrs old.

I agree with Marg, sounds like maybe a staph infection, or maybe a sebaceous (sp?)cyst. The cysts usually drain creamy colored fluids sometimes with chunks. Sorry for the grossness. I am glad you are going to get it checked. My dtr had what I thought was a pimple on her leg, it did not go away. We went to the dermatologist who cultured it, and it was a pennicilin resistant staph infection. I can only guess she got it at the swimming pool.


Well-Known Member
Cory gets awful boils/cysts on him that he has to get lanced every so often. The doctor told him that it comes from bacteria on his body that gets into his skin. Ideally he could go swimming daily but that isnt in the cards so he is to take a bath about 3 times a week with 2 or 3 caps of bleach in the bath water.

Anyone remember the old brown bottle of lysol that our moms used to use to clean with? My mom used to put a tiny bit in my bath water in the summer time. I wonder if this is why. Maybe we had to get disinfected back then...lol.


New Member
I had something similar to that when I was in my 20's but had insurance and went to the doctor before it got that out of hand. The first doctor I went to tried to lance it and freaked out and scared me half to death. I won't tell you what he said but he bandaged me up and sent me across town to a dermatologist immediately.

The dermatologist took one look at it and told me it was probably an under the skin bacterial infection did a biopsy just to be on the safe side, gave me a shot of cortisone on the site it's self and sent me home. The biopsy left a small scar and I can't remember now if I had just the one shot or if there were two. It did go away pretty quickly after he did that.

I hate to say it but I really think you need to have a doctor look at it. Messing with it yourself could cause worse problems and be more expensive in the long run and I doubt it is going to go away on it's own :(. With it being so close to your eyes, It could be a real concern.

I'm no doctor and can really only comment on what I myself had. Yours may be something else entirely.

I hope it clears up for you soon and with the least expense.

Take care.



Active Member
you may have been exposed to chicken pox and not have known it. My aunt had a very, very mild case of it, when she was very young and didn't know she even had it. She found out when she got a wicked case of shingles as an adult.

I think if you've been in contact with someone with shingles, it's extremely contagious and dangerous.

I hope you are at the ER now. Let us know what the deal is.

$500.00 for a doctor's visit?? for a few shots???? Holy Cow! If you had ins. they wouldn't have gotten that much from ins. co. They'd have gotten 60 or so for the OV and then about 20 bucks per shot.


Active Member
I tried to reply last night but our modem was playing up. Or something was.

I saved my post, here it is - modified slightly to respond to more recent comments also.

The description off how it is behaving (up until this morning, that is) eases some of my fears. Not happy about the recent extra swelling, though - it does not sound like a sebaceous cyst, any swelling with those is purely from displacement by their contents. This sounds like lymphatic drainage/other gunk - infective/inflammatory.
Loth's right, shingles is a possibility worth considering. But if you cannot recall having had chickenpox, it makes shingles more unlikely. This degree of puffiness is not usually found in shingles. And Fran's right, too (as are others) - anything in this area is a potential infection/inflammation risk to the brain.

If it's shingles it's still only been a week, I don't think it's too late for antivirals. It would account for the pain you describe (as would a bacterial infection). BUT - you would have had to have had chickenpox - unless you had it as a baby and don't recall?

Even if you feel it's subsiding - get it checked out. I suggested emergency because I thought it was free (or cheaper) - I'm not used to your health system. And from what you said this morning about your local doctor - I think that's outrageous! Over here we've had some people respond to the long waiting times (when you have an appointment) by billing the doctor for THEIR lost time, sitting in the waiting room. But I digress.

This could be nothing, or it could be potentially nasty if left untreated. That amount of swelling so close to the brain and blood vessels leading to the brain - a concern. I'm glad you're covering it - if it's shingles it reduces the infection risk to others as well as yourself, also keeps it clean (and hidden, in case you're concerned about what others think).

One point - difficult child 3 had a tick about 2 cm away from the outer corner of his eye. We got the tick out within about 2 hours, but his face still swelled up until his eye was almost closed. The lymphatic draining in that area is complex and very sensitive. At this time of the tick year, yours would still be fairly small - past the first mount, but still only pin-head size, if that (I'm talking about Ixodes species; others may be smaller). Lisa, I don't mean to be offensive but if you have kids in their 20s, then your eyes are not as young as they used to be, it is quite possible for you to miss a tiny tick, especially if it's done its worst and now moved on. Or you might have removed it thinking it was just part of a scab. I forget, because I'm so short-sighted that I don't have the same sort of problem, I just take my glasses off and I have perfect close vision - but I remember when I think about it, husband has a lot of trouble identifying things close up (such as fine detail on his own face in the mirror). I'm the family splinter/tick remover, because of my 'trick' eyes.

So in summary the possibilities are:
* a boil (cover it, get it seen to fast in case you need antibiotics)
* shingles (not essential to cover it but a sensible precaution; get to a doctor for antivirals and other possible treatment) - this seems less likely now
* a tick bite leading to a possible sensitivity reaction (covering it not necessary but get to a doctor, that amount of swelling is a concern, even if it's subsiding)
* sebaceous cyst - unlikely, although it might have started as one and now become infected or be blocking lymph drainage due to increased size
* other as yet unnamed possibilities, including some other blockage in the lymphatic system somewhere, needs to be seen by a doctor to assess exactly what it is and to begin treatment if necessary/appropriate.

Good luck with the ER. Do let us know how you get on.


Hound dog

Nana's are Beautiful
ER doctor says it's a boil, but no antibiotics needed as it appears to be healing on it's own just fine. Depite the ugly thing in the middle of my forehead. doctor thinks the swelling of the boil inhibited the lymph drainage causing the bridge of nose swelling.

doctor believes the eye swelling to be coincidental and not related to the boil itself. But allergies rearing their ugly head. (I haven't had the cash to have my allergy medications filled in months) We do have some tall nasty weeds out in the alley, and these last few days it's been cool enough to enjoy a fan in the window instead of the air conditioning. So, I got some allergy medications to tide me over til I can get my script filled in the morning.

No chance of shingles. According to my Mom I never ever had chicken pox, although I can pass it on to others. pediatrician doctor told her I've a natural immunity to chicken pox. I'm the only one out of the 5 kids who never got it. (but I had everthing else known to man) And I've never been exposed to shingles as an adult to my knowledge. My Mom has had it but was two states away.

Tonight my forehead is no longer swollen, eyelids are normal, bridge of nose is normal, just some extra swelling where the bags are under my eyes. And since the allergy medication has begun to take effect I've noticed it going down a bit too. (keeping my fingers crossed)

I'm to return if I notice a fever or worsening of symptoms or other symptoms. (do they always say that? lol)

This trip to ER should be covered by the county as we're very low income with our family members that live at home. I just have to fill out a form.

Tonight I look like someone went crazy with a botox treatment to the bags under my eyes. :rofl:



Well-Known Member
Staff member
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Tonight I look like someone went crazy with a botox treatment to the bags under my eyes. </div></div>

So is that a good thing or a bad thing? :rofl:

Seriously, whew/phew! I'm glad that you are on the mend.



call 911........call 911
I've been telling my son for YEARS that I have a third eye!

Yours just decided to make an appearance.

Glad you're okay....Keep washing it with antibacterial soap and STOP picking it.

THere are a ton of home remedies for boils. The best one I know to bring it to a head? Crack an egg, take out the lining inside the shell (careful it will tear) and place it on the boil. As it dries it acts like a poultice and dries out the boil. It will get tight but brings the boil to a nasty little, pustule.

- Just a tip from your hatchin' good buddy


If all else fails you could go to a Halloween party as:
A unicorn, a cyclops, a member of the band Third eye Blind.

ahem..... :rolleyes: