Hidradenitis suppurativa

Surg Clin North Am. 2002 Dec;82(6):1187-97. doi: 10.1016/s0039-6109(02)00060-9.


Hidradenitis suppurativa is a chronic, debilitating disease of apocrine gland-bearing skin. Its management must be individualized according to the site and extent of the disease. Initial conservative measures with antibiotics, local wound care, and limited incision and drainage can alleviate the acute symptoms, but more radical surgery will likely eventually be necessary in order to control and prevent recurrent disease. Options include unroofing and marsupialization, local excision, or more extensive operative excision with primary or secondary closure, skin grafting, or flap coverage of defects. Wide excision will offer the most definitive therapy, with the trade-off being a higher morbidity. Split-thickness skin grafts in the anal canal may contract and result in anal stenosis and should be avoided. Perianal disease is often best managed with local excision alone, with primary closure for small defects, and either unroofing or healing by secondary intention for larger wounds.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Female
  • Hidradenitis Suppurativa / diagnosis*
  • Hidradenitis Suppurativa / physiopathology
  • Hidradenitis Suppurativa / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Surgical Procedures, Operative