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What is Ear Cartilage Cyst & How is it Treated? | Causes, Symptoms of Ear Cartilage Cyst

The human body reacts to problems in different ways. In many cases, it forms a benign cyst on different parts of the body. The cyst is basically an abnormal cell growth which generally does not possess any danger. However, if it keeps on growing it can put pressure on the nerves of that particular area and can cause improper functioning of that body part. This article deals with what ear cartilage cyst is, its causes, symptoms and treatment.

What is Ear Cartilage Cyst & How is it Treated?

About Ear Cartilage Cyst

When we talk about ear cartilage cyst, it can be found on and around your external ear. It looks very much similar to a simple cyst but in reality, they are a lot different. Generally, these cysts do not need any medical attention but may need medical attention if they cause trouble or begin to grow. Let us understand what ear cartilage cyst is, its causes, symptoms and treatment.

Causes of Ear Cartilage Cyst

Also known as the epidermoid cyst, the ear cartilage cyst occurs when the skin cells shed deeper in the skin and multiple. These cells from the wall of the cyst and secrete keratin which fills up the cyst. Some of the common causes of ear cartilage cyst also include damaged hair follicles or oil glands. The cysts can run in families and can be formed without any reason. Many people get cysts at least once in their lifetime and generally do not possess any health risk.

There are a lot of factors that can acts as risk factors or potential causes of ear cartilage cyst. These include the following.

  • There are some rare genetic disorders that can trigger cyst formation across the body. Some of these, specifically start around the ear.
  • Cysts often do not form in children. Once you have crossed puberty, there is a higher risk of developing a cyst or an ear cartilage cyst.
  • If you have a history of acne and your body forms lumps of liquid, there are higher chance of getting a cyst on ear cartilage.
  • Some skin injuries too are some of the causes of ear cartilage cysts.

Symptoms of Ear Cartilage Cyst

You can feel the ear cartilage cyst under the skin. These are saclike lumps made of dead skin cells. From the exterior, these cysts look like small smooth bumps under the skin and are often confused with a pimple. While there are not many symptoms pf an ear cartilage cyst, it is worth noting the appearance, color and size. The cyst will have almost similar color to your skin with a slight redness in the skin pigmentation. Generally, the cyst that does not create problem often grow up to the size of a pea. You should keep an eye on its size at regular intervals, so as to plan medical consultation.

These cysts are almost always benign and do not possess a health threat. In addition to these, the symptoms of ear cartilage cyst may include discomfort and distraction while performing some tasks such as using earphones.

What If The Ear Cartilage Cyst Gets Damaged?

It is advised to not press or try to burst the ear cartilage cyst on your own. As in most of the cases, it is benign, you do not need to do anything. Irritating the cyst may result in bursting which will result in oozing and pain. For such symptoms of ear cartilage cyst, it is best to seek medical advice and get appropriate treatment, as there ares chance of infection that can cause serious damage to your ear.

Diagnosis of Ear Cartilage Cyst

The diagnosis of ear cartilage cyst is simple as it can be easily noticed. You will feel a bump around the scalp or the ear cartilage. It generally goes away without any treatment but in some cases, it grows and can cause serious health issues. Noting the change in the size or color of the ear cartilage cyst or considering symptoms of ear cartilage cyst are important for evaluating the possibility of complications. In case, the doctor suspects the involvement of any other medical problem, additional investigations may be ordered. Based on examination and investigations, if any, the severity of the condition can be assessed and proper treatment is planned.

Treatment of Ear Cartilage Cyst

The treatment of ear cartilage cyst mainly depends on how severe is the condition. If the cyst is not creating any problems, you do not need to get it treated and it will disappear after a few days. If it is creating annoyance, pain, and grows bigger, then you should check with the doctor to plan an appropriate treatment of ear cartilage cyst. In rare cases, the cyst can cause hearing loss as well, hence prompt treatment is necessary, particularly in complicated cases. It is better to get the doctor’s appointment as soon as possible and seek treatment of ear cartilage cyst, if it is painful.


In most of the cases, there are no symptoms of ear cartilage cyst and it disappears on its own without any treatment. However, in some rare cases, it can cause discomfort, pain and even hearing loss. In case it keeps on growing you should check with the doctor immediately to avoid any damage and infection.


  1. “Ear Cartilage Cysts: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment” – Healthline Source: https://www.healthline.com/health/ear-cartilage-cyst
  2. “Epidermoid and Pilar Cysts (Sebaceous Cysts)” – American Osteopathic College of Dermatology Source: https://www.aocd.org/page/EpidermoidPilarCysts
  3. “Epidermoid Cysts” – Cleveland Clinic Source: https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/18091-epidermoid-cysts
  4. “Cysts” – NHS Inform Source: https://www.nhsinform.scot/illnesses-and-conditions/skin-hair-and-nails/cysts

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Team PainAssist
Team PainAssist
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Team PainAssist, Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:August 9, 2023

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