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View Full Version : What is the fate of an ingrown hair that is allowed to keep growing?


La Llorona
10-27-2005, 01:26 AM
I picked out quite a long ingrown hair today (ouch!) and got to wondering about the little buggers. The standard thing you hear about ingrown hairs that are not picked out but instead keep growing under the skin is that they'll get infected and cause lots of problems. My question is, will all ingrown hairs that keep growing unchecked necessarily become infected, or will they have some other fate? Is it possible to have say, a foot-long ingrown hair lurking somewhere beneath the surface of the skin and not know it, or will it invariably become infected long before it reaches that point?

Mangetout
10-27-2005, 02:28 AM
Hairs will not grow indefinitely; they grow to a certain length, then they (normally) fall out and are (usually) replaced by another, so it's unlikely that an ingrowing hair would reach extreme length.

The ingrowing hair will eventually form the basis of a boil or pustule with a variable level of infection; this may mature naturally and open to expel the remains of the hair, or it may become permanently encysted as a hard little lump.

Bearflag70
10-27-2005, 02:37 AM
Hairs will not grow indefinitely; they grow to a certain length, then they (normally) fall out and are (usually) replaced by another, so it's unlikely that an ingrowing hair would reach extreme length.

I thought fur grows to a certain length then falls out, while hair grows indefinitely.

Does is make a difference if the hair is "fur" or "hair"?

Mangetout
10-27-2005, 02:45 AM
I thought fur grows to a certain length then falls out, while hair grows indefinitely.Not according to Cecil (http://www.straightdope.com/classics/a1_097b.html).

Does is make a difference if the hair is "fur" or "hair"?
AFAIK, the difference is more or less entirely semantic.

irishgirl
10-27-2005, 05:01 AM
Two words for you: Pilonidal cyst.

http://www.fascrs.org/displaycommon.cfm?an=1&subarticlenbr=15

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