Hidradenitis Suppurative is a chronic condition of the skin that causes painful pockets of pus to form under the skin in the areas of the sweat glands and hair follicles. It affects the areas where the skin rubs together like the underarm groins and under the breasts. These boil-like lumps can leak pus and blood and take a long time to heal.
The characteristic feature of this condition is that the painful lumps tend to re-occur and can also form connected tunnels under the skin that secrete blood and pus. This can make movement painful as well as difficult. These lumps leave scar marks on the affected part of the skin.
The exact cause of Hidradenitis suppurativa is not known but it is found that –
- Insulin resistance
- Familial tendency
Increases the risk of getting hidradenitis suppurativa.
It is more common in women than in men. It starts during puberty and can go on until menopause. It is a non-contagious disease and is not caused by poor hygienic conditions.
Hidradenitis suppurativa can affect one or several areas of the body. Signs and symptoms of the condition include:
- Blackheads – the condition begins with blockage of the hair follicles by small bumps called blackheads. These blackheads trap bacteria that leads to infection.
- Painful boil-like lumps. It then progresses to formation of single, painful lump under the skin that persists for weeks or months. Regions of the body where the skin folds rub against each other are more prone to being affected by HS. More lumps may develop over time making the condition more painful.
- Leaking bumps or sores – these boil-like lumps may get bigger and get filled with pus that leaks out giving a foul odour and it can be accompanied with itching.
- Tunnels. Without proper treatment the condition may progress to form interconnecting tunnels between the pus-filled bumps. Tunnelling of these bumps leads to further spread of infection, these wounds are difficult to treat and heal very slowly and drain blood and pus.
- Scarring – these pus-filled bumps (abscess) when heal leave behind scars that can restrict movement of the affected part.
The diagnosis of Hidradenitis suppurative is made based upon the above signs and symptoms. – suppurative lesions, tunnel formation and scarring.
To assess the severity of the condition The Hurley system is used. It is the most widely used assessment tool and describes three clinical stages:
- Stage I: single or multiple isolated pus-filled lumps (abscess) without interconnected tunnels or scars.
- Stage II: Recurrent pus-filled lumps, single or multiple widely spaced with interconnecting tunnel formation.
- Stage III: Spread out involvement of an area with multiple interconnected tunnel formation and pus-filled lumps.
Complications of HS can affect the skin alone or can have an impact on the entire system.
- The infection can spread to other parts of the body and become more severe.
- It can negatively impact the quality-of-life.
- It can lead to low mood and depression
- In susceptible individuals HS can cause skin cancer
- When left unattended it can cause chronic pain, and possibly anaemia.
Treating the disease during its early stages is the only way to avoid drastic complications and life-threatening situations.
General measures for individuals suffering from hidradenitis suppurativa include:
- Lose Weight
- Quit Smoking
- Wear loose fitting clothes
- Use Absorbent dressings to cover the wound
- Overcoming anxiety and depression.
In conventional medicine the treatment is limited to antibiotics and in worst cases surgery. Even then the probability of the disease relapsing is high and recurrence of boils does take place.
The conventional system of medicine can treat the hidradenitis suppurativa with the use to antibiotics and anti-inflammatory medicines that can kill the bacteria for the time being but it cannot abort the tendency for the reoccurrence. That’s why most patients taking allopathic treatment for hidradenitis suppurativa keep getting it again and again.
In Homoeopathy we aim to reduce the intensity, recurring tendency and progression of the disease so that the patient can lead a normal life. Homoeopathic treatment is based on complete case-taking and determining the various reasons a disease has come up. Skin is the most superficial organ and any disturbance in the internal well-being will be first revealed on the skin. It can be mental, emotional or physical stress that triggers such a reaction. With the use of correct homoeopathic medicines these issues can be resolved. In such manner Homoeopathic treatment enhances the regenerating and renewing potentials of the individual and speeds up the healing of the abscess and sinus tracts whilst providing symptomatic relief from the pain and eliminating the tendency of reoccurrence. With the use of homoeopathic medicines one can ward off these infections without the unwanted consequences of using allopathic antibiotics and painkiller or surgeries and continue to lead complaint free life.