Boil in the groin: what it is, symptoms, causes and treatment

A furuncle in the groin is an infection at the root of the hair that causes symptoms such as a lump with pus in the groin that can grow over time, pain, increased local temperature, redness and sensitivity to touch, for example.

This type of infection is caused by bacteria, mainly Staphylococcus aureus , which is naturally present on the skin, but can cause local inflammation due to poor hygiene, skin injury or the use of razors to shave, for example.

In most cases, a boil in the groin disappears spontaneously without the need for treatment. However, to speed up the elimination of the boil, you can apply a warm water compress to the area at least 3 times a day. In some cases, the dermatologist may also recommend the use of antibiotics.

Symptoms of a boil in the groin

The main symptoms of a boil in the groin are:

  • Lump with pus in the groin, which can grow over time;
  • Presence of a yellow-whitish spot on the pit;
  • Pain or discomfort in the lump;
  • Swelling and redness at the site;
  • Increase in local temperature;
  • Sensitivity to touch.

In addition, in some cases, a low fever or swollen glands in the groin, for example, may also appear.

A boil in the groin should not be confused with an inguinal hernia, which is a lump that also appears in the groin area, but which is caused by the exit of a part of the intestine through a weak point in the abdominal muscles. Learn more about inguinal hernia and how to treat it .

Therefore, it is important to consult a dermatologist or general practitioner whenever symptoms of a boil in the groin appear, so that the most appropriate treatment can be diagnosed and started.

How to confirm the diagnosis

The diagnosis of a furuncle in the groin is clinical, and is made by a dermatologist or general practitioner through an assessment of symptoms, health history and physical examination, observing the characteristics of the lump in the groin.

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In some cases, the doctor may collect a small sample of the pus contained in the boil, to be analyzed in the laboratory, in order to identify the type of bacteria that is causing the infection and, thus, indicate the best antibiotic.

Possible causes

A boil in the groin usually occurs due to inflammation of the hair root, which is in most cases associated with infection by the bacteria Staphylococcus aureus , which can be found naturally in mucous membranes and on the skin.

Some factors can contribute to the development of a boil in the groin, such as:

  • Small wounds or lesions on the skin;
  • Poor skin hygiene;
  • Obesity;
  • Diabetes;
  • Weakened immune system.

Additionally, having skin-to-skin contact with a person infected with Staphylococcus aureus bacteria also increases the risk of a groin boil.

When there is infection and inflammation by this bacteria, the immune system is activated, resulting in the formation of pus and symptoms.

A blocked sebaceous gland can also cause an infection and develop into an abscess at the site. Learn more about the causes of boils.

How is the treatment done?

Treatment for boils in the groin should be done under the guidance of a dermatologist or general practitioner, who may recommend applying warm compresses about 3 times a day, in addition to washing the area thoroughly with warm water and mild soap. See also some options for home remedies for abscesses.

The doctor may also recommend the use of analgesic or anti-inflammatory medications, such as paracetamol or ibuprofen, to relieve pain and discomfort.

Under no circumstances is it advisable to try to squeeze the boil, as this can worsen the inflammation and infection, making it more difficult to treat.

In some cases, the doctor may recommend draining the abscess, which involves removing the pus, or using antibiotics in the form of ointments or tablets. Check out the main ointments for boils


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