A skin abscess is a painful pus-filled bump that sits underneath the skin, although abscesses can develop anywhere in the body. Abscesses are usually caused by infections with bacteria and they are tender to touch. The area around the bump is often red and painful, and the centre may appear yellow or white.
Some abscesses do not require any treatment and will disappear naturally. For larger or persistent skin abscesses a course of antibiotics might be prescribed. It will help to clear the infection and prevent it from spreading.
However, antibiotics alone may not be enough to clear a skin abscess, and the pus may need to be drained to clear the infection.
Skin abscesses have many causes like blocked sweat glands, small breaks or punctures in the skin, inflammation of hair follicles. All these conditions can cause bacterial infection under your skin.
As abscesses are caused by an infection, you may also see other symptoms, including weakness or fever.
You should never try to squeeze or puncture the abscess. It’s better to see a doctor to find out how you can treat your skin abscess quickly and effectively.
More severe abscesses may require treatment by a surgeon. If the lump continues to enlarge over time, if redness is spreading, or if your fever is high, please book an appointment with our surgeons for their diagnosis and effective treatment.