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Folliculitis is a common skin condition characterized by inflammation of hair follicles which results in itchy, painful and red bumps. It is usually caused by bacteria or fungal infection and can affect the hair follicles present all over the body. This condition is more common in adults than in children.
Types of folliculitis:
Superficial folliculitis: It is acute in onset and causes mild discomfort. Bacterial folliculitis, hot tub folliculitis (pseudomonas folliculitis), razor bumps (pseudofolliculitisbarbae), and folliculitis of the upper trunk (pityrosporumfolliculitis) are examples of superficial folliculitis.
Deep folliculitis: In this type, the patient will have long-standing painful lesions. Recurrent lesions may cause scarring and permanent hairloss. Examples of deep folliculitis include sycosis barbae, gram-negative folliculitis, boils and carbuncles, and eosinophilic folliculitis.
SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS
The signs and symptoms of folliculitis are as follows:
This condition is generally observed in hairy areas of the body such as thebeard, face, scalp, armpits, thighs and inguinal regions.
Folliculitis is usually caused by bacteria, fungi, viruses and inflammation of ingrown hair. Other factors which may cause folliculitis include
The following are the some of the risk factors for folliculitis.
The following are the complications of folliculitis.
The doctor would first clinically examine the patient’s skin and discuss the medical history. The doctor may consider using a technique referred to as Dermoscopy which uses skin surface microscopy to examine the skin lesion. If the infection is severe, then a Skin swab may be taken to determine the cause of infection.
Skin biopsy is rarely done to rule out other conditions. A small amount of the affected skin tissue is removed and sent to laboratory for examination. The tissue is studied under the microscope to determine the pathological changes and to establish diagnosis.
Folliculitis may be treated with self care measures, medications and laser hair removal. The choice of treatment is based on the severity of the condition.
A variety of medications are available for the treatment of folliculitis. The doctor may prescribe the following types of anti- fungal or anti-bacterial antibiotics based on the cause of infection:
Laser hair removal: The laser light is used to remove the hair follicles permanently to decrease the density of hair from the affected area. It may be associated with side effects such as scarring and blistering.
Minor surgery (lancing): The doctor may make incision and drain the pus from large boil or carbuncle and cover the area with cotton gauge after the surgery.
Self care measures and home remedies
The following are the some of the home remedies which may be helpful in relieving signs and symptoms of folliculitis.
Folliculitis can be prevented by the following ways:
Who are usually affected by acne? Most people with acne are aged between 12 and 25 but some older and younger people are affected. Boys are more commonly affected than girls.
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