Understanding Infected Sweat Glands

Treating Infected Sweat Glands

Because of the different types of glands involved in various sweat gland infections, treatments can range from simple to severe. For miliaria, good hygiene can often prevent the buildup of gland-blocking sweat and bacteria on the skin. If miliaria erupts, however, it often quickly responds to a change in temperature: Getting out of the heat and into a cool, dry area can reduce the severity of symptoms and give the skin a chance to heal [source: Baker].

Apocrine sweat gland infections may require a more hands-on approach to treatment. Treatments such as warm compresses may help open the clogged ducts, but it may take antibiotics to knock out the bacteria behind the pustular inflammation common to apocrine sweat gland infections [source: Zacherle]. The scarring that forms in severe, chronic infections such as hidradenitis suppurativa may require a more drastic step. If the scars are unsightly or cause discomfort, the doctor may remove the section of skin containing them. This procedure is often reserved for only the most severe cases, where the long-term process of letting a section of skin regenerate on its own is a small price to pay for relief from painful, persistent infection [source: Jovanovic].