3 Tips For Identifying And Managing Hidradenitis Suppurativa

Health & Medical Blog

Hidradenitis suppurativa (HS) is an inflammatory dermatological condition that primarily occurs on areas of the body where skin touches other skin, such as the groin and armpits, but may occur in other areas. Since HS is easily confused with other conditions, it is important to accurately identify the problem and find a treatment regimen.

Consider Your Medical History

Outbreaks of HS often resemble boils, cysts, or other painful skin lesions, making it difficult to attribute the outbreaks to a chronic condition. Repeated outbreaks of lesions in the same areas is the major clue of HS. Having a medical history of autoimmune conditions can also increase the chances that recurrent outbreaks are likely HS. It is important to mention any instances of skin problems to your doctor, even if they have temporarily resolved. This will help your doctor identify patterns, possibly leading to an HS diagnosis.

Minimize Friction

Since friction contributes to HS outbreaks, you want to avoid clothing that creates friction against your skin and minimize skin-to-skin contact. Try wearing comfortable clothes made of softer fabrics. Looser clothes are less likely to cause irritation and some clothes have a silkier texture, which make them glide over the skin easier. If you exercise or sweat profusely, try to change out of your wet clothing more often. Damp areas of the body can increase the chances of breakouts becoming infected.

To help keep various areas of your body dry, you may consider using your antiperspirant in skin folds. As long as your skin is not currently irritated, you can apply a small amount of your usual antiperspirant on your groin area or other body skin. Just do not apply antiperspirant to the anal or genital areas. Another option is silicon-based products that are marketed as anti-chafing or anti-friction. Once dry, the product creates a silky barrier, decreasing friction where your skin touches.

Try Medications

Your dermatologist may drain skin lesions that are especially painful to help them heal faster. If there is an active infection, a course of antibiotics will usually eliminate the problem. Unfortunately, since HS is a chronic condition and some people have severe cases, lifestyle changes and treatment during each outbreak is not enough. Many of the treatments used for autoimmune disease might be helpful in treating severe cases of HS. For example, some biologics (specifically TNF inhibitors) and disease-modifying anti-rheumatics are used to manage the condition.

HS is a painful condition that can cause damage to the underlying tissue with repeated outbreaks. Identifying HS is the first step to finding the appropriate way of managing the condition. For more information, contact a company like Advanced Dermatology Care.


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