What is Hidradenitis Suppurativa?
Hidradenitis suppurativa is a skin condition that causes small, painful bumps, or nodules, to form underneath the skin. These nodules can break open and tunnels can form under the skin. This condition usually affects areas where the skin rubs together, such as the groin, armpits, buttocks, and breasts.
This condition can affect one or multiple areas of the body. Common signs and symptoms include:
- Painful Bumps: Hidradenitis suppurativa often begins with a single, painful bump under the skin. After weeks or months, more bumps may form.
- Double Blackheads: Small, pitted regions of skin with side-by-side blackheads are a common symptom.
- Tunnels: Over time, the tracts connecting the bumps may form underneath the skin. These wounds heal slowly and may leak pus-like drainage or have an unpleasant odor.
The severity of this condition will differ from person to person. Stress, hormonal changes, excess weight, humidity, or heat may make symptoms worse. In women, this disease may become less severe after menopause.
Hidradenitis Suppurativa Treatment Options
While there is no cure for hidradenitis suppurativa, there are a number of treatment options available to lessen symptoms and stop the disease from getting worse. Your treatment will depend on the severity of your case and your symptoms. Common treatment options include:
Topical corticosteroids and Antibiotic creams: Individuals with mild symptoms may be prescribed topical creams that fight infection.
Systemic Oral Drugs: Antibiotics taken by mouth may help to control symptoms. Other forms of oral therapy may be used when needed.
Biologic Injection Drugs: An injection of adalimumab may be also used for those with moderate to severe symptoms. This therapy is injected at home.
Deroofing: This is often performed for those with moderate to severe symptoms, and involves uncovering the tunnels by removing tissue.
Laser Therapy: Carbon dioxide lasers can be used to treat the painful bumps.
Surgical Removal: For patients with severe or persistent symptoms, surgery may be an option. This involves removing the afflicted skin under the care of a general surgeon or a plastic surgeon. A skin graft is sometimes necessary to close the wound.
Who is a Good Candidate for Hidradenitis Suppurativa Treatment?
If your hidradenitis suppurativa is painful, does not improve over time, flares up often, or appears on multiple areas of your body, you can benefit from treatment. To determine the best treatment option for you, contact our office today to schedule a consultation. During this appointment, you will be able to discuss your Hidradenitis Suppurativa and ask any questions that you have. Dr. Beach will create a custom treatment plan to help improve your symptoms for a more comfortable you.
What to Expect After Hidradenitis Suppurativa Treatment?
Downtime is dependent on the type of treatment or surgery that is performed. However, after treatment, patients generally notice an improvement in their hidradenitis suppurativa symptoms.