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January 29, 1973

Treatment of Hidradenitis Suppurativa

Author Affiliations

University of Texas Medical Branch Galveston, Tex

JAMA. 1973;223(5):556. doi:10.1001/jama.1973.03220050056019

To the Editor.—  In a recent article advocating the treatment of hidradenitis suppurativa by excision and skin grafting, Shaughnessy et al (222:320, 1972) stated that "all... therapy short of total excision of the apocrinegland-bearing tissue is temporizing." Several hundred cases of hidradenitis suppurativa seen at our institution during the past 20 years have been successfully treated by exteriorization, curettage, and electrocoagulation.The basic exteriorization procedure had been employed for some time, but its modification with curettage and electrocoagulation, as advocated by one of us has led to excellent results.1 It is unfortunate that more surgeons do not learn and use this simple technique.The depth of perirectal lesions should be investigated preoperatively. Fissure-inano and processes that involve the deep subcutaneous tissues require more extensive surgery and are not treated by the method herein described. Adequate preoperative evaluation of perirectal lesions should include gentle probing of the sinus tracts, a