If you are reading this, you might be worried that you have HS. You might have noticed some changes in your skin that are not normal for you.
Knowing the signs and symptoms of hidradenitis suppurativa is the first step in the pathway to diagnosis. HS is often misdiagnosed and mistaken for similar conditions, such as folliculitis or acne. But there are several traits that make HS unique and distinguishable from other skin conditions. Ask yourself the following questions and if you answer yes to any of them, or experience any of the symptoms of HS, please see a dermatologist.
- Do you experience painful, tender lumps and bumps on or under the skin? Pay close attention to areas like the armpits, groin, buttocks, thighs, under the breasts, the genitals, neck, chest, arms, and legs.
- Do the lumps drain liquid like pus or blood?
- Do the lumps heal over but leave a scar or pits in your skin?
- Do the lumps last for weeks or even months before they go away?
- Do the lumps clear up and reoccur? Have you noticed a lump, or several lumps come and go in the same area of skin?
- Do you have blackheads in your skin, in particular in little clusters or blackheads with 2 heads, like a little tunnel in your skin with a blackhead in each end?
- Do your lumps appear symmetrically? Meaning, if you have one in your right groin, have another one appeared in the opposite side?
- Does anyone in your family experience similar lumps and bumps?
If you answer YES to any of these questions, you should speak to your doctor and explain your symptoms to them. It is helpful to keep a diary of your symptoms so you can be as descriptive as possible.
Keep note of:
- How many lesions or lumps you have had in the last 3 months
- What location the lumps are in
- How long they last for
- If you experience pain, keep a score of the pain out of 10 (0 being no pain, and 10 being the worst pain)
- Describe your pain – is it stingy, is it stabbing, throbbing, aching, does it come and go, or is it constant?
- Any medication you may have taken or anything you have used on your skin
- Your digestion – do you experience any problems with your digestion or using the bathroom? People with HS have higher rates of digestive issues
- Any other symptoms such as fatigue, feeling unwell, a high temperature or difficulty moving
It is important that your doctor gets the whole picture so that they can provide you with the best care.
Please note: This quiz is for informational purposes only and does not replace medical advice. Please consult with a medical doctor for more information and treatment.