Suggest treatment for persistent abscess on chest area

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Posted on Sat, 13 Jun 2015 in Infections
Question: I have had an abcess aboout 3/8" diameter on my chest for over two years. Tried soaking it , but very little pus comes out.It really hasn't changed in size or color. Is it o.k. to simply continue to leave it alone.? is there likely to be any complications if there haven't been any after all this time?
doctor
Answered by Dr. Prakash H Muddegowda 2 hours later
Brief Answer:
yes, likely to have complications

Detailed Answer:
Hi,
Thanks for asking.
I am Dr. Prakash HM and I will be answering your query.
Based on your query, my opinion is as follows:

1. Long standing abscess indicates chronic infection. Maybe foreign body inside it not allowing it to heal.
2. Pus culture will identify appropriate antibiotics therapy and will help in healing.
3. Regarding your question, complications include possible entry into deeper areas like muscle or lung, or chronic abscess can rarely progress into cancer. Another possibility is entry of abscess into blood stream and septic shock.

Do get it evaluated and treated.

Hope it helps.
Any further queries, here to help again.

Dr. Prakash HM
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Prakash H Muddegowda 27 minutes later
Thank you. What kind of procedure is is involved with pus culture? Is it easy with no anesthesia,or more complex?Can you briefly describe the procedure in lay terms? What is the best type of doctor to do this? Dermatologist,internal Medicine,Family physician. Surgeon?
doctor
Answered by Dr. Prakash H Muddegowda 9 hours later
Brief Answer:
Simple procedure, no anesthesia necessary

Detailed Answer:
Hi,
Thanks for asking again.

Pus from the abscess is taken and inoculated and cultured in a separate dish in the laboratory to identify the type of infectious organism. Then sensitivity test is done on this organism to identify appropriate antibiotics for treatment.
Sample is take from the abscess with a cotton or ear bud. No anesthesia is necessary. It's an outpatient procedure, will take less than a minute.

Your doctor can refer you to a microbiological laboratory for this test. It is culture and sensitivity test. Once identified, treatment will become easy.

Surgeon is preferable. However, initial evaluation can be done by your family physician.

Hope it helps.
Any further queries, here to help again.

Dr. Prakash HM
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Prakash H Muddegowda 11 hours later
Thank you so much, DR XXXXXXX HM. Very helpful. Final question--If let alone at my age and after 2 years, can you make a rough assesment on the % likelihood of any of the complications mentioned in your third point occurring? I have a few health considerations to evaluate over the next month or two which seem to take precedence in my mind.Again, thank you. I am grateful.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Prakash H Muddegowda 3 hours later
Brief Answer:
You can look into others for now.

Detailed Answer:
Hi,
Thanks for asking again.

Change of a chronic lesion into malignant tumor is very low. It could be around less than one in ten thousand in the next two years. If you find, the edges are becoming hard or there is a new growth, then only its worrisome.
Not to worry. You can take care of important thing's. Wait and watch can be done now.

Hope it helps.
Any further queries, here to help again.

If you so not have any further queries, you can close the discussion and rate the answer.

Dr. Prakash HM


Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Neel Kudchadkar
doctor
Answered by
Dr.
Dr. Prakash H Muddegowda

Geriatrics Specialist

Practicing since :2004

Answered : 2138 Questions

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