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Fluid-filled lump under scalp. Taking prednsone and antibiotics. Could I ask a doctor?

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Practicing since : 2010
Answered : 6248 Questions
I went to bed one night and woke up with a large fluid-filled lump under my scalp which was quite large (about the size of a $.50 piece. I was surprised that were it an infection, it had become so big that fast. I tried a warm wet cloth and even iced it. It wasn't tender to the touch but was painful due to the pressure building up. I even tried to XXXXXXX it myself since it occurred on a weekend, however nothing came out but (as with most scalp wounds) it bled heavily. It seemed to be a little better by Monday, so I let it go. Now, it's a week and a half later and it's back and bigger than before. I'm taking prednsone and antibiotics but I want to know what this is and if it will keep coming back and if I should seek additional help.
Posted Thu, 22 Aug 2013 in Skin Hair and Nails
Answered by Dr. Rahul Kumar 1 hour later
Hello XXXX,
The area under scalp is prone to develop a bacterial infection called as carbuncle,
It is a deep bacterial infection.
The another possibility of sudden appearance of lump is insect bite.

I would like to know, whether you felt any insect bite in night ?

I would also like to see the lesion.
This will help me in giving a closer diagnosis.

You have a feature to upload the reports / image by yourself at the right side of the query page, please utilize that so that I can answer your queries better. You can also send the reports/ image to YYYY@YYYY with the subject as 'ATTN: Dr. Rahul Kumar

Waiting for your response.

Thank you
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Fluid-filled lump under scalp. Taking prednsone and antibiotics. Could I ask a doctor? 1 hour later
No, no insect bites. Additionally, I am prone to MRSA infections after shaving under arms or bikini line. I have ointment for this which I thought may help? I will try to upload an image or two (pardon the appearance). The dark spot on the image is where I attempted to drain it myself and much of the redness is where I keep rubbing it to see if it's gotten bigger/smaller. It was originally all flesh colored with no redness as shown in the left side of my ever-growing bald spot. It now extends a millimeter or two into the hairline on the right and below. I have some sunburn gel that contains aloe and lidocaine which has provided some relief but something's gotta give (pun intended). Thanks for your help,

Answered by Dr. Rahul Kumar 1 hour later
Thanks for the photographs, I must appreciate you have taken lot of trouble to take them.
Its looking like a bacterial infection, in addition you are prone to MRSA, so suspicion becomes more stronger.

Apply the oint for MRSA at this lesion, it will help you.
Only lidocaine cant cure it.

In addition you should also take some antibiotic orally as the infection is looking deeper.
Hope this helps you,

Feel free to ask if you have any other doubt.

Thank you
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Fluid-filled lump under scalp. Taking prednsone and antibiotics. Could I ask a doctor? 20 minutes later
One last question and I promise I will click the little blue button and let you get some rest. I am taking some antibiotics I had with an available refill for the MRSA and, along with the prednisone I take for Lupus, it usually clears up other infections in a few days. Is there anything else my primary care doctor would do that I can't do here with the resources I have on hand? Are these usually recurring events as mine has been and if so should it be excised at some point? Thank you in advance for your assistance. You have been very helpful. Have a good night.
Answered by Dr. Rahul Kumar 13 minutes later
Its my pleasure to help you, I would not mind any number of questions from your side regarding any type of health issue.

Its good that you are taking antibiotic, continue that.
At present you dont need to go to your GP,
There is no pus which can be drained, also dont try to pierce it.
You may end up infecting it more.

I would like to know how much prednisolone you are taking.
Actually prednisolone delays wound healing.

Waiting for your response :)
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Fluid-filled lump under scalp. Taking prednsone and antibiotics. Could I ask a doctor? 18 minutes later
I am on 5mg of Prednisone daily. I will do my best to keep my hands off of it. It didn't appear to have any effect whatsoever when I made the incision anyway. I was just hoping to relieve the pressure and the lidocaine is numbing it well enough to dull most of the resulting pain. I know the prednisone can suppress my immune system but I'd been warned by my Rheumatologist not to suddenly stop taking it. Will the effects of it outweigh the benefits of the antibiotics and keep it from healing altogether or just prolong the time it would take otherwise?
Answered by Dr. Rahul Kumar 5 minutes later
You can safely take 5 mg.
There is no need to stop it.
The concern of delayed healing only appears if the dose is more than 30 mg.

So no worries,
Have a good sleep,
good night.

Thank you
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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