Wednesday 13 December 2017

More information finally available on little-known skin condition

Scientists don't know exactly what causes hidradenitis suppurativa or HS, but problems with the structure of the hair follicle are thought to play a role.
Scientists don't know exactly what causes hidradenitis suppurativa or HS, but problems with the structure of the hair follicle are thought to play a role.

An embarrassing skin condition, which can cause significant pain, anguish and stigma may be affecting hundreds of people in Ireland who have yet to get a diagnosis.

The condition, known as hidradenitis suppurativa (HS), can strike at any age, but most commonly develops in adolescents and young adults, and may decline after the age of 50-55.

The condition is three times more likely to develop in women than men. People with the disease tend to develop self-management habits to deal with the boils or nodules during its early stages, but as it worsens or spreads, professional help is needed, according to the Irish Skin Foundation.

The foundation now has a new section on its website with more information on the condition. See irishskinfoundation.ie/HS.

Tallaght Hospital dermatologist, Dr Anne-Marie Tobin, said:"We don't know exactly what causes HS, but infection of hair follicles followed by dysregulation (abnormality or impairment) of immunity play a role. Until now, it may be difficult for those who have the condition to find information."

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