Hidradenitis suppurativa: Disease pathophysiology and sex hormones

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Hidradenitis suppurativa is a cutaneous chronic inflammatory disease that is estimated to affect about 1% of the population and caused pain, malodorous discharge, disfigurement, and poor quality of life with psychosocial problems. The typical features are recurrent painful nodules, abscesses, and sinus tracts on the axillae, groins, gluteal areas, and anogenital regions since postpuberty. Smoking and obesity are two major triggering factors of hidradenitis suppurativa. Women are prone to have hidradenitis suppurativa than men in Western countries, but the male-to-female ratio is reversed in oriental countries. The disease severity can be affected by menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause. Furthermore, the phenotypes are different among men and women with hidradenitis suppurativa. Men are prone to have buttock involvement while women are prone to have axillary, groins, and submammary lesions. This review introduces the skin appendages and pathophysiology of hidradenitis suppurativa and then focuses on the sex difference and the effects of sex hormones on hidradenitis suppurativa and current hormone-associated treatments.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)257-265
Number of pages9
JournalChinese Journal of Physiology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Nov 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)


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