My name is Lindsay. I was 15 when I first started getting signs of HS. Of course at that time we had no idea. My doctor just thought that it was a recurring cyst. So, I was given multiple doses of antibiotics whenever a flare up would happen.
Emergency Surgery At 17 Years Old
When I was 17, I woke up unable to move my arms higher than my shoulders. The pain was so bad from the bumps. I went to the hospital that day and got emergency surgery on both of my arms. They told me that the bumps shouldn’t come back but if they did, get a referral to a general surgeon.
The bumps came back about three months later so I got a referral for a general surgeon. At the surgeon’s office he made the call that I likely have HS. He gave me a referral for a dermatologist who specialises in HS. Within a few short months I got seen and they confirmed that it was HS. It was a lot to take in, I was only 17 at the time. We booked a surgery for the summer to get the biggest nodule out that was causing me an extreme amount of pain. I was also put on an antibiotic at the time to try to help any flare ups from happening.
The surgery was done by an amazing doctor, Dr.George, who I am still continuing to see for HS. I hoped that the surgery would be the only thing that needed to be done and that it would only be regular check ups after that, but I was wrong. I have had countless steroid injections to help with the smaller nodules and the ones that are big and are causing me pain get cut out in the doctor’s office. I had a very painful nodule under my breast which I thought was just acne so I never mentioned it. When I did, it was a same day procedure to get it removed and then stitches. It is an ongoing battle but I feel like I have a good handle on it now.
Not Alone Anymore
It’s amazing to see all of the resources out there for people with HS. When I was first diagnosed I felt alone and that no one would take me seriously. I was lucky and had an amazing support system that helped me every second along the way. With all of the resources and help you can get now, I truly don’t feel alone anymore.
HS is not something to be scared of, it shouldn’t limit your life especially not with the huge amount of support you can find from groups online. I’m 22 now and I have been dealing with this for 8 years now. I always thought it would just go away but I had to learn that it is something to live with and you just need to adjust to your new normal. It takes time but you will find it.