Dieting with Obstacles - Boils

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03-09-2012, 04:00 AM
Kind of gross..but does anyone else have/had this issue in regards to their weight? Did it improve with weight loss?

I've never in my entire life had an issue with boils (and I've always been overweight) until I put on about 50-70 pounds in the last couple of years. Suddenly, I woke up one morning and had a boil on my chest. I used warm compresses and it eventually popped and drained on its own. I cleaned the area and covered it until it healed on its own, so I didn't think anything of it.

Then they began to multiply and pop up in various places on my inner thighs, bikini line, buttocks, waist line, breasts, etc. I thought at first it was from an ingrown hair but then they started showing up in places where I don't shave. At one point I could barely walk and had 8-10 at a time. I tried the warm compresses again and it helped with the pain some. I made an appointment at my dermatologist and he put reluctantly put me on an antibiotic (I'm allergic to several different antibiotics so he was only left with penicillin to work with). I took the antibiotics as directed and they seemed to clear up a little bit, but didn't go away completely. I've been back to him several times and he's explained that typically overweight individuals are more prone to them due to sweat glands and skin folds. We've done several rounds of antibiotics and I've done research about them from different medical sites but haven't been able to find anything that's worked and now they don't even come to a head. They just swell up and eventually go away, leaving a purple scar, but remain hard to the touch. I've tried different types of soaps, home remedies, drawing salves, creams, etc. I shower religiously so hygiene doesn't seem to be an issue.

I've lost 35 pounds in the last couple of months and they don't seem to be getting any better. I've made an appointment with another dermatologist to get a second opinion, but in the meantime, I'm wondering if anyone else is having this issue and if they've gotten better with weight loss?

03-09-2012, 06:00 AM
Iīve been overweight my entire adult life. I am now 160 and still get boils. I currently have one on my neck that has been there for about a month. I always pop mine with a needle. Man they are disgusting. But, personally I donīt see them going away with weight loss. I think itīs a thing you that get, or you donīt get!!! Sorry girl!

03-09-2012, 09:30 AM
Some people have luck with antibacterial soaps.

I used to be very prone to skin and other infections including boils and seborrheic dermatitis. My dermatologist recommended that I use a zinc pyrithione shampoo as my only soap (such as Head and Shoulders - I use the Walmart or Dollar Store equivalent).

I also use zinc oxide cream at any kind of skin redness, itchiness, irritation or break out from heat rash to pimples (I was using it every day as a precaution in the areas that were especially infection prone, but was able to gradually use it less frequently).

Zinc is an antimicrobial and it works against many bacteria, viruses and fungi.

I also had a prescription antibiotic/steroid cream to use during flare-ups, but found that I almost never needed it, as long as I kept up with the zinc shampoo and the zinc oxide cream.

As to the zinc oxide cream, when have a mild breakout, but I'm going out, I use a clear zinc oxide (found in the summer with the other sunscreens), but at night and on less visible areas I actually use Desitin creamy or the generic store-brand version (yes, diaper rash cream).

It sounds weird to use diaper rash cream on your face, but there's no difference between the diaper rash zinc oxide creams and the sunscreen or skin protectant zinc oxide creams (in fact the only difference is the box they're put in - and sometimes the price).

I use the "creamy" or "non-greasy" formulas, because many of the others are way too greasy (they're even difficult to wash off your hands). Before I found the non-greasy formulas, I would wear plastic gloves to apply the stuff.

In the winter, I use the combination shampoo and conditioner Head and Shoulders (or Walmart version) because it's less drying. I use it as my face soap, my body wash, and even as my hand soap. In the bathroom, the liquid soap dispenser is even filled with Head and Shoulders.

I hardly ever have any kind of skin issue anymore, and the mild ones I do have clear up very quickly when I use the zinc oxide cream. I almost never have to use the prescription cream (unless I run out of the zinc cream and don't replace it).

03-09-2012, 10:48 AM
I don't know a whole lot about it, but I can tell you that boils are sometimes related to staph infections. You should probably ask your doctor specifically about that possibility so you can be given the proper medication to treat the problem.