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1. Have you had a painful bump or lesion that became inflamed, then healed, and then appeared again?

HS typically begins with just one painful lesion that forms under your skin and remains for days, weeks, or months. These often occur in areas where skin rubs together, or places where you have more sweat glands.2
HS commonly affects the underarm areas. (DermNet NZ)

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2. Have you had a bump or lesion that oozes or emits a foul-smelling odor? 

If your bumps break open and ooze pus, the drainage may have an odor. If pus or fluid drainage is present, a dermatologist may collect a sample of the fluid for testing in order to rule out other skin conditions.3

These HS lesions on skin of color are beginning to drain. (VisualDx)

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3. Have you seen bumps appear on your inner thighs, armpits, chest, groin, or buttocks?

HS breakouts happen in parts of the skin that contain apocrine sweat glands, which are located in the armpits, under the breasts, in the groin area, and in the folds of the buttocks. Women are more likely to be affected in the groin area, armpits, and under the breasts, while men are more frequently affected around the anus and buttocks. HS can also affect the scalp, the back of the neck, or other areas.3

HS lesions can affect the buttocks. (DermNet NZ)

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4. If your bumps clear up, do they leave a scar? 

Without treatment, HS can continue its cycle of breakouts and healing. As breakouts clear, scars may form. Continual healing and scarring can cause hollow passages called fistulas to develop under the skin. Some people develop tunnel-like tracts under their skin. As the skin continues to heal and scar, the scars may thicken. When thick scars form in the underarm area, moving the arm can be difficult. Thick scars in the groin area can make walking difficult.4

HS scarring can appear after lesions heal. (DermNet NZ)
If you think you may have HS, the first step is to speak to your dermatologist about your symptoms.5

NOTE: This questionnaire is for informational or background purposes only and should not be used as a replacement for seeking medical advice or care from your doctor. Consult your doctor for medical information about your condition and advice on how to manage it.