Atheromas are subcutaneously located cystic alterations, which represent the retaining of the products of sebaceous glands. They are caused by blockage of the gland duct which opens on the skin surface.

An atheromalooks like a welllimitedtumorin the subcutaneoustissue. Itis fixed tothe skinthatcovers it, with a visible central plug, from which white, rarely yellowish, smelly stuff can leak.

Atheromas are commonly found on the scalp, face, back, and inthe area ofthe front of thechest.
Atheromas are treated surgically on an outpatient basis under local anesthesia.

If inflammation and ulceration occur, which is almost a hundred percent complication of atheromas, the atheroma becomes painful and swollen, and has to be treated surgically, with an incision which removes purulent content. This procedure is only palliative, because after lessening of the inflammation it is necessary to remove the atheroma capsule, in order to prevent recurrence.