Medical Specialty >> Dermatology

Doctors Lounge - Dermatology Answers

Back to Dermatology Answers List

If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately. Doctors Lounge ( does not recommend or endorse any specific tests, physicians, products, procedures, opinions, or other information that may be mentioned on the Site.

DISCLAIMER: The information provided on is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between a patient/site visitor and his/her physician. Please read our 'Terms and Conditions of Use' carefully before using this site.

Date of last update: 10/18/2017.

Forum Name: Dermatology Topics

Question: spreading, painful sores under armpits and on thighs

 disenfranchised - Mon Dec 04, 2006 10:14 pm

I am 22 years old, male, and have had no serious illnesses in the past. I am currently on no medications and have ascertained with most of my family that my case is unique amongst it. I am not exceedingly overweight (about 16 stone, 6' tall, stocky build)

I have been to three doctors about my current predicament, all of whom have been stumped by the problem and insist that I come back and see them every week or so, which I can't do because a doctor's consultation here costs €55, even without the medication, so I can't afford to go to him again and again.

One day, I noticed a red bump in my armpit which grew and then drained and disappeared. A while later (I can't remember how long) it returned with a vengeance and I was subject to some of the worst pain I've ever encountered. Almost any movement caused severe pain.

After a few reoccurrences an abscess appeared and, strangely, with the advent of this, it stopped hurting as much when I had a breakout. Then the sores started appearing on my thighs, around my buttocks, occasionally in between the buttocks (these bled quite severely), and on my scrotum and once on my penis. These are accompanied by several smaller red dots which don't cause pain. Finally it spread to underneath the other arm, and since that, I have been having breakouts almost constantly. The sores under my arms produce a truly terrible smell (vaguely fishy) although I have not noticed any smell coming from the ones on my thighs (although that may be due to a lack of olfactory proximity). I have been on two different antibiotics (one was Doxycillin, I'm afraid I can't remember what the other was) the first of which did nothing, and the second of which (the doxycillin) helped with the sores, but did not stop them entirely. I was on doxycillin for a month and when I stopped the course, the sores came back just as numerously and painfully as ever.

I have all but definitely ruled out sexual disease as I have only had 2 partners, both of whom are not infected.

I really need help with this. I have also tried applying anti-fungal creams, although they didn't help after a week so I stopped using them.

Any help anyone can give me on this matter would be greatly appreciated because I am incapable of having a relationship or even removing my shirt in front of anyone, or even sharing a bed.

Thank you for reading this and I hope someone will be able to assist me.

 Dr. Safaa Mahmoud - Tue Dec 05, 2006 3:56 pm

User avatar Hello,

It is very difficult to find out the cause of your symptoms without direct clinical examination, however from your description, it sounds to be due to friction and fungus. I would not role out the possibility of secondary bacterial infection since you have mentioned abscess formation.

Skin rubbing against skin generates heat and sweat, they in turn
lead to , redness and , painful Itchy patches. Obese and active people are more susceptible.

The Itch may progress into inflammation and becomes more complicated when bacteria comes into the picture.

If caused by fungus, the Itch and redness will be more gradually. In such cases, the patches of scaly skin will have defined, ring-like borders—hence the medical name Tinea cruris, or ringworm of the groin. Fungus-caused jock Itch predominates in the summer.
I would advise you also to check for your blood sugar in addition to complete blood picture.

Treatment of fungal infection may require about 4 weeks of local antifungal measures to clean these lesions, which should be regural continuously taken. Local hygienic measures and keeping these areas dry is essential.
Oral therapy in disseminated cases is helpful.
 KissNbug - Tue Jan 13, 2009 11:29 pm

I have had something similar, only it was only under my arm. Its happened before and gone away but this time its a lot bigger, and very painful, as to where it hurts just to move my arm. And it bleeds sometimes. I've had it for almost two weeks now. Its one of the worst pains I've ever had and I don't know what to do either. I was told to put a steaming hot washcloth on it which does help a little...

| Check a doctor's response to similar questions

Are you a Doctor, Pharmacist, PA or a Nurse?

Join the Doctors Lounge online medical community

  • Editorial activities: Publish, peer review, edit online articles.

  • Ask a Doctor Teams: Respond to patient questions and discuss challenging presentations with other members.

Doctors Lounge Membership Application

Tools & Services: Follow DoctorsLounge on Twitter Follow us on Twitter | RSS News | Newsletter | Contact us