The role of wide local excision for the treatment of severe hidradenitis suppurativa (Hurley grade III): Retrospective analysis of 74 patients

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Effective medical treatment for patients with severe hidradenitis suppurativa (HS) is limited.


We sought to measure the impact of wide local excision on quality of life in HS Hurley grade III patients and to examine the rate of postoperative complications, disease recurrences, and satisfaction with the cosmetic results.


Seventy-four patients were enrolled. Outcome measures included Dermatology Life Quality Index responses, disease duration, recurrence, previous therapies, postoperative complications, and satisfaction with cosmetic results.


Most patients had inguinogenital/gluteal disease (68.9%, P < .001). Involvement of both the axillary and the inguinogenital/gluteal areas were pronounced in male patients (P = .018). None of the patients was treated with tumor necrosis factor-α inhibitors. Most patients (71.6%) had a disease history of >5 years at the time of presentation and multiple unsuccessful attempts with systemic and local therapeutic interventions. Wide local excision improved Dermatology Life Quality Index scores from initially 27.89 to 5.31 after surgery (P < .001), independent of localization (P = .195). Forty-seven percent of patients had postoperative complications, most frequently pain and scarring. The vast majority of patients (70.3%) were satisfied with the cosmetic results.


The retrospective nature of the study was a limitation.


Wide local excision significantly improves the quality of life of HS patients. Local recurrence rates are low, and satisfaction with the cosmetic results is high.

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