ELI5: Explain Like I'm 5

hidradenitis suppurativa

Hidradenitis suppurativa is a big name for a yucky skin problem that can happen to some people. The skin problem can show up in places where we have hair, like our armpits, groin, and sometimes even our bum cheeks.

You know how sometimes when you have a pimple it can get really red and swollen? Well, hidradenitis suppurativa is kind of like that, but worse. Itchy lumps or bumps that can be painful and filled with pus. They can get as big as a golf ball and can ooze a lot of pus and fluid.

Hidradenitis suppurativa mostly happens when hair follicles get blocked, infected or inflamed. This can stop sweat glands (tiny pipes in our skin that release sweat) and hair from growing out. This makes our skin swell up and get really sore.

Doctors don't know exactly what causes hidradenitis suppurativa, but some people think it can be because of stuff like stress, hormones, or bacteria.

The good news is that doctors can help people with hidradenitis suppurativa. Some ways to help this problem is by taking medicine, using special creams or ointments, or even having surgery if needed.