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A cyst misinterpreted on airport scan as security threat (2016-09-15)

A traveler with a bulge in their body from a cyst or hernia might get flagged for an invasive airport security screening to look for explosives.
Given the recent airport terrorist bombings in Brussels and Istanbul, security is of paramount concern. Benign dermatologic lesions may trigger suspicion for contraband.

One female traveler with a common type of skin cyst was flagged for a hidden explosive search at a U.S. airport, her physician, Dr. Warren Heymann, a researcher at Cooper Medical School of Rowan University in Camden, New Jersey, notes in the report.

'...I would suggest that people be aware that this could happen to them if they have prominent lesions on their skin. Just knowing that should alleviate any anxiety. Having a letter from a physician noting the presence of a cyst, hernia, or other lesion might help, but understandably, the TSA agent may still wish to perform a pat down and a swipe for contraband. Mutual understanding and respect should allow the screening process to go smoothly.'

For more information
JAMA Dermatology
A Cyst Misinterpreted on Airport Scan as Security Threat

Dermatology Insights and Inquiries
Warren R. Heimann, MD