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Recurrent Vaginal skin infections. could diabetes be masquerading….?

Mr Karoshi
By Mr Karoshi
Published Jun 26,2023

Vulval abscess or Folliculitis or Follicular abscess… Vulval abscess (Vulva = Outer part of the female genitalia) is a common gynaecologic problem that has the potential to result in severe illness

These abscesses typically originate as simple infections that develop in the vulval skin and can spread to deeper layers. Spread of infection and abscess formation in the vulval area is facilitated by the loose areolar tissue in the deeper layers of the skin. The contiguity of vulval fascial spaces with other anatomic compartments permits spread of infection from the vulva to the inner thigh and abdominal wall

The causative bacteria of vulval abscesses, are often mixed bacterial infections, consisting primarily of (MRSA) and bacteria which does not need oxygen for their multiplication (anaerobes) The diagnosis is mainly by inspecting the swelling and feeling the size of it

Treatment of vulval abscess depends upon the lesion size and the patient’s risk factors for failure of therapy. Small lesions (<2cms) often resolve with conservative therapy (eg, warm compresses); however, incision and drainage is the mainstay of treatment of vulvar abscesse if it is >2cms Antibiotic therapy may be used in combination with conservative measures.

For patients with a vulvar abscess ≥2 cm, incision and drainage may be needed.

With hidden diabetes, such recurrent infections are more frequent and also appear to have a poorer response to therapy such as antibiotics and sometimes can progress to severe form of infection like blood poisoning ( sepsis) There is good evidence that good control of blood sugar can improve outcomes.

For women with undiagnosed diabetes or pre-diabetes, vaginal infections may occur often because these organisms multiply unchecked in the high sugar environment. Skin health is often a re#ection of general health and could be a pointer to issues like diabetes if infections of the skin are a non- resolving issue.

Also, recurrent fungal skin or vaginal (yeast) infections could be a sign of elevated blood sugar. Also, wounds or sores that refuse to heal, could be another pointer towards diabetes. This means women affected by this problem needs tests to rule out diabetes.

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