Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some common questions about hidradenitis suppurativa (HS).

Hidradenitis suppurativa, or HS, is a chronic inflammatory skin condition that may be caused by malfunctions in the body’s immune system.

The first sign of HS you may see might be a bump on your inner thigh or a lump that looks like a pimple in your armpit.

These bumps and lumps start to develop in areas where you have hair and also where skin rubs against skin such as the underarms, groin area, buttocks, inner thighs, and underneath the breasts.

Learn more about what hidradenitis suppurativa (HS) is at What is HS? >

Was this helpful?

Thank you for your feedback

408 people found this helpful

While the exact cause of HS is unknown, it’s believed that HS is caused by an overreaction of your immune system that, in turn, leads to abscesses deep within the skin.

Get all the info on the causes of HS at What Causes HS? >

Was this helpful?

Thank you for your feedback

160 people found this helpful

With HS, abscesses (sore bumps that can be filled with pus) and nodules (painful bumps that can become larger over time) form under the skin. It can start out as simple as a bump or nodule on your inner thigh, what you may mistake as a pimple in your armpit, or even a lump in your groin that you may think looks like a cyst. These bumps can become large and painful and last for months. They can fill with pus that has a smell when they rupture, and when they heal they can leave a scar.

Fistulas can also form and leak pus. These are leaking sores that take a long time to heal, and when they do there’s often scarring and the development of interconnected tunnels under the skin in that area.

Learn more about the common symptoms at HS Symptoms >

Was this helpful?

Thank you for your feedback

152 people found this helpful

As you may know, there is no cure for HS, but there are a number of treatment options that dermatologists prescribe that may give you some relief and help manage your signs and symptoms.

Learn more about different ways to help your HS at Treatment Options for HS, and talk to a dermatologist to find the right treatment option for you.

Was this helpful?

Thank you for your feedback

120 people found this helpful

There are people all over the world living with HS who may have feelings similar to yours. That’s why joining an HS support group is a good option for connecting with people who are in a similar situation.

Here are some HS support groups:

It’s also important for everyone to get the correct diagnosis and the appropriate treatment; that’s why you should see a dermatologist if you think you have HS.

Was this helpful?

Thank you for your feedback

110 people found this helpful

Please note

You are leaving noBSaboutHS.com. By clicking this link, you will be leaving this site and connecting to a site neither owned or operated by AbbVie. AbbVie is not responsible for the contents of any such website or any further links from such website. AbbVie is providing these links as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of the linked website by AbbVie. You should also be aware that the linked website may be governed by its own set of terms and conditions and privacy policy, for which AbbVie has no responsibility.

Is this what you would like to do?

Close

Nodule

A small bump or lump under the skin.

see glossary list >
Close

Abscess

A collection of pus causing swelling and inflammation in the surrounding skin.

see glossary list >
Close

Rupture

Forcibly tearing or bursting through the skin.

see glossary list >
Close

Hair follicle

The root where hair grows.

see glossary list >
Close

Chronic

Continuing or occurring again and again for a long time.

see glossary list >
Close

Comorbidities

Medical conditions that appear together.

see glossary list >
Close

Triglycerides

A type of fat found in the blood that might raise your risk of coronary artery disease.

see glossary list >
Close

HDL cholesterol

High-Density Lipoprotein cholesterol, or “good cholesterol.” High HDL cholesterol levels are desirable, as they reduce the risk for cardiovascular (heart) disease.

see glossary list >
Close

Glucose

Sugar in bloodstream, derived from carbohydrates.

see glossary list >
Close

Lesion

An ulcer or sore on the skin, such as those caused by HS.

see glossary list >
Close

Fistula

An abnormal connection or tunnel under the skin that forms because of injury, infection or inflammation.

see glossary list >
Close

Sinus tract

A narrow tunnel under the skin that is open on one end and lets fluid escape or drains fluid.

see glossary list >
Close

Corticosteroids

A medicine used to relieve swelling, itching, and redness in the body.

see glossary list >
Close

Infusion

The slow therapeutic introduction of a medication into the body via a vein.

see glossary list >
Close

De-roofing

Removing the top of a cyst, sinus tract, or abscess by surgery.

see glossary list >