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What does a pink bump on outer labia indicate?

Answered by
Dr. Rakhi Tayal


Practicing since :2001

Answered : 13244 Questions

Posted on Mon, 18 Aug 2014 in Women's Health
Question: Hi, I had a pink, slightly raised, and what looked like clear or yellowish fluid inside located on the border between the inside and outside of my outer labia, where I've shaved. I went to get a bikini wax and could tell the waxer noticed it, and she changed the wax as soon as she finished the wax which scared me. I went to an urgent care doctor who looked at it and told me it looked cystic and absolutely not like herpes, and did not think it was necessary to test. I was still worried and on the fifth day of it being there with no change is size or pain or opening up, I went to my gyno who said it looked like folliculitis from heat and friction (I live in a humid environment) but did a swab test. She popped it in order to get fluid out of it and noted that it did look slightly vesicle-like and released a small amount of clear fluid and blood, but continued to state that she was not worried that it was herpes and if she was she would have called me in antivirals right then. I had no pain or tingling (until it was popped, after which it developed a tiny scab in the middle, which made it resemble an ingrown hair which made me feel slightly better, and then today i picked at it on accident while trying to get a look at it and now i feel like it looks like a teeny tiny (the size of the tip of a pencil) raw spot or like a pimple thats been popped. With two different doctors telling me they assumed it was not herpes, i feel like I should be less worried but something tells me this must be herpes. It was a tiny and painless bump at first and only after messing with it and popping it did it feel tender at all. I had no swollen lymph nodes, but I did have a sore throat, UTI symptoms (I've had reflux and an issue with recurrent UTI's so I know exactly what they feel like and this one felt no different). The sore throat has also been recurring throughout the year, and responds to allergy meds. Yet all of this points to Herpes. especially because I had unprotected sex approx. 2 weeks before. I'm trying to look for anything that would tell me this isnt herpes but it seems to be. Do you think it's possible that it is only a case of folliculitis? I had other areas that were obvious folliculitis (i have always had very sensitive skin) around where I shaved, but this specific spot looked different. I also want to clarify that the surrounding white looking bumps are simply hair follicles and appear raised because I am stretching and pushing the skin to get a really close look at the bump

Also, the dr did note that she could be wrong, and personally she seemed a little less sure of it not being herpes after she popped it and the clear fluid came out. She told me that if it was positive she would just call me in antivirals or "it would just go away on its own" as if it was not a big deal, which is why im worried. She did not seem sure it wasn't herpes and a close friend of mine went through an experience with genital herpes where a doctor told her they were positive it was a bacterial infection or infected hair follicle and to go home and not to worry and then she got her results and was positive.
Answered by Dr. Rakhi Tayal 4 hours later
Brief Answer:
Folliculitis likely.

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for trusting us with your health concern.
In herpes infection pain, burning, tingling, or itching occurs at the infection site before the sores appear. Then clusters of blisters erupt which break down and scab over.
I have seen the images attached. This seems to be a simple folliculitis.
To confirm the diagnosis we need to do a culture sensitivity of the discharge from the bump. If it is folliculitis, impetigo or boils, it will come out positive on bacterial cultures. For cold sores, you need to get some investigations like sample from the sore to identify the virus, culture analysis, Tzanck smear, antigen and antibody studies and blood sampling for antibody studies done to confirm the diagnosis.
Please feel free to discuss further. I will be glad to answer the follow up queries that you have.
Wishing you good health.
Dr. Rakhi Tayal.
For future query, you can directly approach me through my profile URL

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
Follow up: Dr. Rakhi Tayal 9 minutes later
So in your opinion this does not look like a mild case of Herpes? I keep looking at it thinking it looks worse but I may just be anxious.

If I got the fluid swabbed and cultured or tested at my OB's (I'm not sure if it was a culture or what) then is there a high chance of a false negative? I'm just so paranoid that this is a very mild case of herpes and will be missed and then I'll end up passing it on to someone else unknowingly.
Answered by Dr. Rakhi Tayal 36 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Not like Herpes.

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for writing again.
False negative is not likely. The chances are less than 2%. So need not worry. As such it looks like folliculitis and is likely to become alright in next few days.
Hope my answer is helpful.
Do accept my answer in case there are no further queries.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar

The User accepted the expert's answer

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