What the difference between a cyst and an ulcer?

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besure77's profile pic

besure77 | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Senior Educator

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A cyst is a small sac that is filled with fluid, gas, or other material and are usually benign. They are very common and can be found just about anywhere on the body. They are usually very small but they can grow to be very large and these types of cysts can cause problems. There are many different kinds of cysts that can form on the body. Here are some of the more common types of cysts: ovarian cysts, ganglion cysts, bakers cysts, cysts of the thyroid gland, and sebaceous cysts.

An ulcer is quite different. An ulcer is an open sore and they can be very painful. A common type of ulcer is called a peptic ulcer and they occur in the stomach or the upper part of the small intestine. Almost all peptic ulcers are caused from a bacteria called Helicobacter pylori. Ulcers can also be caused by stress.

trophyhunter1's profile pic

trophyhunter1 | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

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A cyst is a growth, usually benign, surrounded by a capsule and may contain be semi-solid or contain fluid or gas. They range from microscopic to quite large and may occur almost anywhere in the body.

An ulcer is a sore, or an excavation of the surface of a tissue or anĀ organ due to inflammation. Eventually, the dead tissue is removed and a sore is the result. They may occur in the stomach, the eye, the foot, or anywhere that inflammation may occur.

For more information on ulcers, see the link below.

thewriter's profile pic

thewriter | College Teacher | (Level 1) Valedictorian

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An ulcer is caused due to damage on the surface of the skin or any internal membrane. There are many types of ulcers and though the most common ones are those that affect the digestive system, ulcers are also found on the outer skin; as foot ulcers; genital ulcers and many more. Ulcers can be caused due to various reasons depending on what type of ulcer it is. These range from the type of food consumed, to bacteria, lack of movement, not wearing proper clothes and many more. Ulcers can be painful and some of them need immediate medical attention as they can prove very dangerous.

A cyst on the other hand is a structure created by the body for no useful purpose. Most cysts are created on the surface of organs or between muscle and skin tissue. They are usually harmless and most are filled with air. Some cysts are filled with infected fluids or sebum. There are many ailments involving cysts that are very painful and dangerous, an example of which is cystic fibrosis that affects the lungs. These cannot be ignored and need immediate medical attention.

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