Hidradenitis suppurativa (HS) is a disease that usually begins as pimple-like bumps on the skin. The pimple-like bumps tend to develop in places that everyday pimples do not appear. HS is most common on the underarms and groin.Some people say that their HS looks like pimples, deep-acne like cysts and blackheads, folliculitis (looks like swollen pimple with a hair in the center), or boils. Getting treatment for HS is important. Early diagnosis and treatment can prevent HS from worsening. If HS worsens, the pimple-like bumps can grow deep into the skin and become painful. They can rupture, leaking bloodstained pus onto clothing. This fluid often has a foul odor. As the deep bumps heal, scars can form. Some people develop tunnel-like tracts under their skin. As the skin continues to heal and scar, the scars thicken. When thick scars form in the underarm, moving the arm can be difficult. Thick scars in the groin area can make walking difficult. Because HS can look lot like acne, folliculitis, or boils, it is best to see a dermatologist for a diagnosis. To a dermatologist’s trained eye, the differences between HS and other skin diseases are subtle but obvious. Proper treatment depends on an accurate diagnosis.

Do you have Hidradenitis suppurativa (HS) or has the surgical procedure known as "deroofing" been suggested to you? 

Check out this video featuring Dr. Keeling and Dr. Lam that will:

  • Give you an overview of hidradenitis suppurativa (an inflammatory skin condition)
  • Review the deroofing procedure & what to expect before, during and after
  • Answer some of the questions most commonly asked by patients & their loved ones

Dr. Christopher Keeling

Dermatology & Mohs Micrographic Surgery

Dr. Lauren Lam

Medical, Surgical & Cosmetic Dermatologist. Clinical Lecturer Dermatology Department of Medicine, University of Alberta.