Most cysts that develop on a person's face are known as epidermoid cysts, which are simply bumps of benign tissue from the epidermis that have failed to shed. This causes these epidermal cells to move under the skin, where they can accumulate, multiply and form into the cysts. Though these cysts are rarely painful or cause any problems, many people want them treated or entirely removed for cosmetic purposes. Treatment options vary greatly, running from the least invasive to more aggressive approaches of removal, especially when the cyst is inflamed or infected.
When a cyst has developed and become inflamed, most doctors recommend a series of corticosteroid injections to treat the condition. Over time, the cyst will lessen in size but not necessarily go away completely. Drainage, excision and surgery are the only methods to truly "remove" the benign tissue.
If corticosteroid drugs fail to produce positive results, you may go through a procedure where the cyst is actually drained. With this form of treatment, a small incision is made directly into the cyst so any fluids within its structure can secrete and be removed. This reduces the size of the cyst, often to the point where it can no longer be seen.
If the cyst returns, a surgical procedure would be performed to actually remove the cyst. For some, only a portion of the cyst is removed, especially when the cyst is fairly small in nature. With this sort of procedure, any contents are expressed and then the wall of the cyst is removed. This usually minimizes scarring, which is important when dealing with facial cysts.
For others, the entire cyst is removed, especially when other procedures have not stopped the cyst from reforming. In this situation, a large incision is made and the entire lump of tissue is extracted from the face.
Not as invasive as "standard" surgery, this form of treatment entails the use of a carbon dioxide laser directed to the affected area of the face. As the laser penetrates the skin, the emitted energy actually disintegrates the benign tissue with virtually no scarring.