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Crohn's Disease Forum » General IBD Discussion » Armpit pimple, or another abscess?


07-28-2012, 08:39 PM   #1
chirisu
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Armpit pimple, or another abscess?

I've been on prednisone for a couple months. I just finished a 2 week course of Flagyl and Levoquin. I haven't started Humira yet (waiting for an anal abscess to finish draining).

I found a painful lump in my armpit yesterday. I tried popping it, but to no avail. I tried attacking it with a needle, putting honey on it, putting toothpaste on it (home remedies for acne), and it still remains unchanged.

Is it possible that it's just a REALLY stubborn pimple? Or is it likely that it's yet ANOTHER abscess, just in a different location?

I've read that people with Crohns sometimes develop abscesses elsewhere... Or Swollen lymph nodes... But I just finished the antibiotics... surely they would have helped with an abscess, even if it's not in the usual area..

I don't have another appointment with any of my doctors for another week at least... Think it's worth calling them about now?

-_- So tired of this crap... It's just one thing after another. First a fistula, then chronic diarrhea for 2 months, then a new abscess and 4 weeks so far being out of work, then this.

Last edited by chirisu; 07-28-2012 at 08:39 PM. Reason: Clarify details
07-28-2012, 09:28 PM   #2
dragonfly
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
i would call and get it checked out if its really bothering you, if not then just wait til next appt. i have crohns, fistulas and HS. i dont wanna scare you about the lump bump pimple thing but i had the same thing only mine is on my upper left thigh where it meets with the groin....it fills and gets as big a a golfball but always opens and drains on its own, sometimes the dr will cut & drain it but it ALWAYS comes back. its been about 6 maybe 7 months now my dr decided to put a name to it....hidradenitis suppurativa or HS its hard enough for me to pronounce it let alone spell it so i just stick with HS!! i thought no way i wanted a second opinion so i saw a derm he said he was 99% sure it was NOT soi was stuck in between the 2 drs figuring out how to treat it....i decided to get another opinion from a colorectal surgen and im so glad i did...he says he has no doubt it is 100% HS but now we are moving forward to treat it!!! he also explained to me that remicade (which i just came off of 3months ago) failed to work for me because my fistula was so old....them meds only really work for new fistulas which my old dr never told me. but back to the HS....it is very common in people with crohns but its not very talked about because people think it makes them sound dirty or gross. mine has always been in the groin area but i have notcied little red bumps between my breasts as well. HS is a skin disease it effects the groin, breasts, underarms and neck. if you look it up you can see pictures of what it looks like. when my is big and swollen i found that tea tree oil works well to help sooth it. again im not trying to scare you or dx you in any way at all.....i have had my lump/bump/boil for almost 8 years before they decided to give it a name! but its something i would def talk to your dr about. and your question about just finshing antibiotics and still having this "thing" if it is HS its a skin disease it only effects the skin and its layers thats the bad part of it antibiotics do nothing because its not an inside infection so to speak its an infection in the skin only, pores get clogged and well its hard to explain but if you get some extra time google it and check it out. i hope its not HS but wont hurt to read about it. best of luck with clearing up the abscess and good luck starting humira.
07-29-2012, 03:26 PM   #3
chirisu
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Two days and it's still going strong. I've tried to use a dibucaine ointment and what remaining pain pills I have to deal with the pain, but I can barely move my arm without it hurting like crazy. I'm calling my doctor today, hoping that the on-call doctor will be able to give me some advice as to who I need to see...

Will the GI doctor be able to lance it in-office? Or would it be better to go to the Colorectal surgeon?

I'm calling the GI doc for now, and I'm going to mention HS specifically. Thankfully I found a website that gave me a pronunciation for it.

This is an utter nightmare. As soon as I start feeling better from the surgery on a new abscess in the anal region a month ago, this creeps up.

Last edited by chirisu; 07-29-2012 at 03:27 PM. Reason: clarifying text
07-29-2012, 04:19 PM   #4
Sailorluna
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You might want to use a hot compress on it even just a washcloth to help draw the infection out. I am not sure about who does the lancing for your armpit. My GI won't touch an abscess no matter where it is and I am unsure if a cr surgeon will work on an armpit.

I had a couple boils in my armpits as a teenager, was too embarrassed to tell anyone and now have huge deep scars. If the pain gets too bad or you pop a fever you may want to go to the ER.
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Symptoms since 98
Resection and diagnosis June 2010
3 fistulas
abscess drained 6 times (so far...)
currently 2 seton in place 1 since 9/11 the other 4/14
1 strange small air pocket with an 8 cm sinus track leading into the great unknown
methotrexate weekly
folic acid
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07-29-2012, 05:22 PM   #5
silvermander
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I've dealt with a similar issue for the past 15 years off and on. I'm not saying it's the same thing, just that I have dealt with something I thought was a monster zit, but wasn't really. My doc says it really doesn't have anything to do with the Crohn's, but I always wonder as it seems like everything that goes wrong with my body connects to the Crohn's somehow.

We've discussed having it cut out that gland/pore, but as it's never become as huge as it did the first year, we've put it off. It takes quite a while for anything to come out of it, and hurts terribly when it does, but after it feels so good. It's more like a waxy substance that comes out, and can be quite gross. Luckily I have a wonderful boyfriend who will tend to all of my icky medical issues. I have quite the scar under my arm as well.

As I have just developed my very first perianal abscess (yay me!), I have to say that the armpit is very different from the bum - though they both hurt terribly! I'm sorry I can't be of more help, but I can commiserate with the pain.
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30+ years of Crohn's Disease and many strong opinions.
Diagnosed - Age 8, 1981
Small Bowel Resections - 6 - had a fistula and 6X8 abscess, as well as some small bowel removed - 9/2/11
New abscess, named Albert! 7/7/12
Prednisone - Way too much & never again!
Cimzia - Started 5/20/11, hoping for the best. Scared that it won't work, like everything else.
Humira/Remicade/Imuran/6MP/Flagyl/ect - Been there, done that & really should get the t-shirt!
07-29-2012, 05:55 PM   #6
723crossroads
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Dear chirisu,
I too get abcesses under my armpit that take forever to go away and I had them on my stomach many times. Gross! Teresa
07-29-2012, 11:21 PM   #7
chirisu
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I've dealt with a similar issue for the past 15 years off and on. I'm not saying it's the same thing, just that I have dealt with something I thought was a monster zit, but wasn't really. My doc says it really doesn't have anything to do with the Crohn's, but I always wonder as it seems like everything that goes wrong with my body connects to the Crohn's somehow.

We've discussed having it cut out that gland/pore, but as it's never become as huge as it did the first year, we've put it off. It takes quite a while for anything to come out of it, and hurts terribly when it does, but after it feels so good. It's more like a waxy substance that comes out, and can be quite gross. Luckily I have a wonderful boyfriend who will tend to all of my icky medical issues. I have quite the scar under my arm as well.

As I have just developed my very first perianal abscess (yay me!), I have to say that the armpit is very different from the bum - though they both hurt terribly! I'm sorry I can't be of more help, but I can commiserate with the pain.
Mine's not really draining, it's just really swollen, with a big white head (do abscesses have heads?)....... no matter what I tried, it just wouldn't pop, though, and putting all that pressure on it just made it hurt worse.

I called my GI doctor's physician's assistant on call and they prescribed me antibiotics... Keflex, 500mg 2x daily (generic name Cephalexin).

Tomorrow I call my primary and see if they want to wait for the antibiotics or look at it immediately.

I'm definitely going to mention all this (and the possibility of HS) to my CR surgeon and GI doc when I see them next week.

Thanks for everyone's responses, I'm freaking out a little bit less. Could be the percocet.. hm.
07-30-2012, 07:46 AM   #8
723crossroads
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Mine's not really draining, it's just really swollen, with a big white head (do abscesses have heads?)....... no matter what I tried, it just wouldn't pop, though, and putting all that pressure on it just made it hurt worse.

I called my GI doctor's physician's assistant on call and they prescribed me antibiotics... Keflex, 500mg 2x daily (generic name Cephalexin).

Tomorrow I call my primary and see if they want to wait for the antibiotics or look at it immediately.

I'm definitely going to mention all this (and the possibility of HS) to my CR surgeon and GI doc when I see them next week.

Thanks for everyone's responses, I'm freaking out a little bit less. Could be the percocet.. hm.
chirisu they are actually like a boil. My Dr. told me when you have an infection inside it causes them. A round of strong antibiotics should help. But, I just waited it out. I don't like taking antibiotics unless necessary. Probiotics are much better. Hope this helps. I put neosporin on mine and covered it with a bandaid. A hot compress might help if it's ready to burst. Good luck and God bless!
09-24-2017, 10:21 AM   #9
jennykule
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: California
hot compress on it even just a washcloth to help draw the infection out. I am not sure about who does the lancing for your armpit.

I had a couple boils in my armpits as a teenager, was too embarrassed to tell anyone and now have huge deep scars.
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