Hidradenitis Suppurativa: Pardon?

While I was at university, I was diagnosed with hidradenitis suppurativa. Despite the difficult-to-pronounce name, HS is rather common – it’s thought to affect around 1% of the population.

Quite simply, HS is a skin condition that causes cysts to appear. They usually come up in places that are close to hair follicles, such as:

  • around the groin and genitals
  • in the armpits
  • on the buttocks and around the anus (back passage)
  • below the breasts

Pretty, huh? I get random flares fairly often, usually in intimate areas, shall we say, but in January, I had a particularly bad flare. On Christmas Day last year, I had a horrendous Bartholin’s abscess come up. Then, a couple of weeks later, HS cysts appeared in pretty much the same spots. One of them has been bleeding since the first week of January. We’re now at the end of February, and I was reaching the end of my tether.

For those of you who don’t know, these cysts can be horrible, especially if they’re in an intimate area. If left untreated, they can create a large hole in the skin, which is incredibly painful, and prone to infection. One of mine was open for about 10 months. Yup. I was constantly on antibiotics, and had a regime of antiseptic cream and dressing the wound. It eventually healed up, but all of these flares have left lovely scars.

Before I was diagnosed, I got a few cysts on my face. After desperate Googling, I found that they were probably sebaceous cysts, and could be treated with castor oil. Castor oil was my saviour, I swear. As soon as I felt a little bugger come up, I’d smother it with castor oil, put a plaster over it, and leave it (usually over night). Normally by the morning, the bump was either gone, or ready to squeeze like a normal pimple. Amazing.

But back to my most recent flare. This little bastard just would not heal. I went to my GP, I saw a gynaecologist, I went back to my GP. They gave me antibiotic cream, antiseptic wash, told me to use Savlon. My GP said to come back if it isn’t healed by early March, as it might develop into a sinus tract (yay!). As of this week, I’d been constantly bleeding for about 6 weeks, sometimes quite heavily. It was also painful.

Desperate, I turned to a Facebook group for people suffering from HS. I needed to know how I could heal this wound. Several people mentioned Medihoney. I was skeptical, but I’d already spent about £30 on prescriptions, so what was another tenner on something that may or may not work?

It fucking works. I’m not even shitting you. I received the Medihoney on Wednesday, and now, on Friday, the wound is barely leaking. It no longer hurts; it isn’t sore and angry any more. I’ve been applying it a few times a day and covering with a cotton pad, and it is healing. I can’t believe it. Three different drugs from doctors have done fuck all, but a tube of bloody honey is working.

It isn’t completely healed yet, so I can’t call it a miracle cure, but I’m so happy I’m no longer bleeding heavily. I’ve got a feeling that Medihoney will now be my saviour.

Do you have HS? Have you ever used Medihoney before? Share your wisdom in the comments below!

You can read up more on HS here (with pictures too!).

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