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Hidradenitis Suppurativa

Hidradenitis suppurativa is a chronic disease caused by obstruction of the apocrine glands in the vulvar and axillary areas. Its cause is unknown in hidradenitis suppurativa.

Unfortunately, the disease often leads to multiple draining sinuses and abscesses, with significant scarring of the vulvar skin.

Although there is no known cure for this disease, in most cases it can be controlled. Patients should develop a lifestyle that allows the vulva to remain open to the air and as dry as possible for as much time during each day as possible. Tight clothing and activities inducing sweating increase symptoms; meticulous cleanliness decreases symptoms. When abscesses occur, they should be drained.

It has been known for some time that many women with this condition improve dramatically when taking oral contraceptives. In general, the least-androgenic steroid combination should be chosen. During prolonged outbreaks, the daily use of an antibiotic such as tetracycline.

Surgery should be reserved for those cases in which these measures provide no relief. Wide local excision with the creation of split-thickness skin grafts or transposition grafts are often necessary to close the defects that are created. Healing is often slow, and recurrence of disease in the remaining apocrine gland-beating areas.