Hidradenitis Suppurativa

What is Hidradenitis Suppurativa?

Hidradenitis suppurativa (HS), also known as acne inversa, is a chronic inflammatory skin condition that primarily affects the apocrine glands, which are found in areas such as the armpits, groin, and buttocks. It is a relatively rare condition, but it can be quite painful and have a significant impact on a person's quality of life.

The main characteristic of HS is the formation of painful, recurrent nodules or abscesses beneath the skin. These lesions can be deep-seated and filled with pus, leading to the formation of sinus tracts or tunnels. The affected areas may also become red, swollen, and tender.

What causes Hidradenitis Suppurativa?

The exact cause of HS is still not fully understood, but it is believed to involve a combination of genetic, hormonal, and environmental factors. It is not contagious or caused by poor hygiene.

HS typically begins after puberty and tends to persist for many years, often worsening over time. The severity of the condition can vary widely among individuals, ranging from mild and infrequent flare-ups to more severe and widespread involvement.

In addition to the physical symptoms, HS can also have a significant emotional and psychological impact. The chronic pain, discomfort, and visible nature of the condition can lead to feelings of embarrassment, self-consciousness, and social isolation.

Treatment for HS usually involves a combination of approaches, tailored to the individual's specific needs and the severity of their condition. This may include topical or systemic medications to reduce inflammation and control infection, lifestyle modifications, such as weight loss and smoking cessation, and surgical interventions in more severe cases.

It is important for individuals with HS to work closely with healthcare professionals, such as dermatologists, who can provide proper diagnosis, management, and support.

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