Medical questions & health advice by licensed doctors
"How do I get rid of boils or bumps?"
I'm a 21 year old female who is seeking a kind of treatment for boils and bumps that are around my vagina and thighs. I've had them there recurring over the past several years and I haven't sought treatment. They usually just go away after a few weeks. They are red and sometimes hurt if I touch them but if I don’t do that then there isn’t really a problem with pain. But I am starting to get worried as they have become more frequent lately. I have never had any kids and I have only ever had one sexual partner who has been checked for STD's before we met and I trust him. I know they are not STD's because I have them since I was a preteen and never have any sexual relations at all when I first started getting them. Should I go to a gynocologist or is there another treatment I can do at home?
It sounds like you are most likely dealing with infections of the hair shafts, called folliculitis. This is very common in sensitive skin areas, especially in areas where chafing and moisture predispose the skin to infection. It is also worsened by shaving, so if you shave in this area that may be a contributing factor.
See a doctor who can help
Find a Primary care-doctors near you
Folliculitis occurs when bacteria get into the base of the hair shafts and cause infection. The symptoms include raised, red areas that can be painful at the base of the shafts. Sometimes, the folliculitis can be controlled simply with good hygiene and keeping the skin dry. If this doesn't work you may want to try an antibacterial wash, including something containing benzoyl peroxide (commonly used for acne). Occasionally, the folliculitis cannot be kept under control with these measure, and you will have to talk to your primary care doctor, who may recommend topical or oral antibiotics. Rarely, the infection associated with the folliculitis can worsen. Therefore, if you notice spreading areas of red, warm, painful skin, or if you notice areas that are swollen and appear full of pus, or if you have fever, these are more concerning signs and you should seek immediate medical care.
Zocdoc Answers is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.