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"My husband has been dealing with an abscess of some sort in his groin area. Is surgery the only option?"

ZocdocAnswersMy husband has been dealing with an abscess of some sort in his groin area. Is surgery the only option?


My husband has been dealing with an abscess of some sort in his groin area. One night it was swollen and we were going to take him to urgent care but he got in a hot bath and it started draining and was relieved of the pain. He is now left with 2-3 holes in the area that constantly drain somewhat clear fluid. He has to wear panty liners. He has seen a dermatologist and antibiotics aren't helping. He also has a pilonidal cyst that he had surgically removed and drained a few times, but still gives him flare ups. It seems when the cysts is doing fine, he gets more drainage in his scrotal area, and when that area seems fine, his cysts flares up. Do you think they could this be interlinked? He has an appointment with another doctor in a couple weeks.


Thank you for this interesting question. In order to provide an accurate answer, I would need more information. I would need to review your husband's entire medical history and perform a physical exam, including an exam of the abscess itself. Only after collecting this information would it be possible to provide accurate recommendations. Therefore, I strongly encourage you to see a general surgeon to discuss management options. An abscess forms when infected tissue becomes walled off from the surrounding healthy tissue. This essentially allows bacteria to continue multiplying and destroying healthy tissue while preventing complete resolution by the body's immune system. Incision and drainage it typically the only definitive management option. Depending on the organism involved and severity of the infection, your husband may also require a course of antibiotics. In most cases, after sterilizing and anesthetizing the affected area, two incisions are made into the abscess, and forceps are used to break up any loculated areas within it. After all the pus has drained, it is typically packed with sterile material. At it heals, the packing is replaced periodically, and over time, the abscess heals over. Without this procedure, the infection can continue to spread and can lead to a large area of dead tissue. I encourage you to discuss this with a general surgeon.

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