Hidradenitis suppurativa is a painful, long term skin disease that causes abscesses and scarring of the skin this can occur usually around the buttocks, armpits, groin and breasts. There is no known cause but according to the NHS website it is linked to inflamed sweat glands and plugging of the hair follicles.
The symptoms are :
- Red boil-like lumps
- channels in the skin that leak pus
Hidradenitis suppurativa is something I have had for about 10 years now and it has been a nightmare. I will never forget the first day I got my first abscess I had no clue what it was. I had never heard of boils up until that point. Luckily for me I only get mine near my armpits and breast. It is painful and tiring. I mean just imagine having an infection for about two weeks with this thing growing on your armpit and it is very painful. Not many people know I have it. I don’t exactly shout it from the roof top because I’ve learnt how to deal with it or only when I’m really sick i’ll discuss it.
There are times where I have been bed ridden because I am so tired and drained from the infection. Did I mention that it is also very painful? I have been to the doctor so many times and been given antibiotics so many times. I am currently on antibiotics right now and I was on it 3 months ago. I am left with holes under my armpits and once healed, scars appear. I was referred to the dermatologist who put me on antibiotics for 3 months and I hated it because I had to avoid sunlight which eventually caused me to have vitamin D deficiency.
My immune system has not recovered from taking all these antibiotics. At one point I was getting the flu every 2 weeks due to my immune system being so low and I also suffer from asthma so I was lucky enough to get the flu jab for free and I haven’t had the flu since. As much as it can get me down sometimes I still manage to do daily activities when I don’t have a flare up. From 2014 to early 2016 I didn’t have a flare up and then bam January; an abscess. Living with it can be depressing at times because when I have a flare up I can’t do the things that I want to and antibiotics are needed immediately. At times I do find this disease embarrassing because sometimes I do get a leak underneath my armpits but it is apart of my life and I cannot run away from it.
According to the NHS website 1% of people have this disease but it could be more.
So I am writing this post to raise awareness and if you know anyone that suffers from it I am here to talk to or if you suffer from it yourself. There is nothing to be ashamed of and please do not be afraid to go and see your doctor.
If you would like anymore any information here are a few links: