Your Questions About Treatment For Skin Boils

Ruth asks…

Urgent… Please Help! Doctors or Nurses Please Help!?

Long story short, I had a sebaceous cyst that is now a boil (skin infection). I went to the doc yesterday and she expressed some serious concern. She mentioned cluster, infection, glands, and hospitalization. However, everyone I talk to says she over did it,… it’s a boil which is very common and they are easily treatable. I have had a warm compress on it non stop since yesterday afternoon. I’ve also had more pain, more aching, and more swelling since then. I have antibiotics I’m suppose to start today, “Sulfa” something. I need to put my mind at ease so I have a few questions. Is it normal for the swelling, redness and tenderness to increase from warm compress? Is it normal for surrounding tissue to hurt as well? Should I be concerned? Are there any other alternative methods of treatment? How long will it take for the infection to come to head (I’ve had it for 1.5 wks now)? Anything else I need to know? It’s on back of my neck and I can hardly move my neck to the right now. Thank you

AnswerBot answers:

Sulfa drugs are an old, old antibiotic. They’re usually prescribed for urinary tract infections. What they’ll do in your case is help prevent the infection from spreading. The surrounding tissues will hurt and the warm compresses are an essential part of the treatment.

It sounds as if your boil is ready to be lanced. Go back to the doctor for this – and do NOT listen to anybody else because the doctor did NOT “overdo” it. That boil is full of infectious material that has to be removed.

What the doctor will do is numb the spot and then use a small knife point to open the boil. Then she’ll apply pressure to express (make it come out) all the pus. Then she’ll put a small bit of gauze tape in the resulting cavity to permit it do continue to drain and put an absorbent dressing over that. The dressing will need to be changed twice daily and will remain until the cavity heals from the bottom up – that will take two weeks or as many as three.

Your doctor is right to be concerned and those others who say she “overdid” it are dreadfully mis-informed. A boil is a serious infection that can spread – before antibiotics were invented, they sometimes spread and killed the people who got them.

And no, there is no – and I repeat, NO “alternative” to properly treat this condition.

Jenny asks…

Does ProActive help Hidradenitis Suppurativa?

I’m looking for a severe acne treatment. I wondered if ProActive would work. Has anyone tried to use it to treat Hidradenitis Suppurativa? I was told I have that skin condition (where you get boils, blackheads, and zits in armpits and groin or places you sweat or skin rubs together). Any suggestions as to what I should use to treat the acne and help heal the ugly purple-ish scars?

AnswerBot answers:

Liz,
I tried the ProActive for my HS and it didn’t make any difference, positive or otherwise. Keep in mind, that all of us are different and what works for one may not work for another. I agree with the person who encouraged you to talk with your doctor(sorry, didn’t make a note of the name before responding), your overall health is as important as treating this debilitating disease. Keep your head up and keep working through it.
Good luck…Rebecca

Robert asks…

still getting spots?

hi, im 25 and still getting spots. its not megga acne but at any one time ive always got at least some boil like spots on my back chest or neck ive been to the docs and they never give me anything that works. im not in a possition to pay out for revolutionary treatment. also my skin is always greasey? i dont eat that much junk food although i do smoke and yes, i do wash. any suggestions????

AnswerBot answers:

I used to get spots quite a lot. They could be caused by lots of things including hormones, stress etc. The doctor can give you creams and pills which help to an extent, but make sure you cleanse, exfoliate and moisturise your skin well, and drink gallons of water!!

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