Role of Lifestyle Modifications in the Management of Hidradenitis Suppurativa in Adults: A Systematic Review [paper]




Maxwell, Joni

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Introduction: Hidradenitis suppurativa is a chronic inflammatory skin disease characterized by recurrent abscesses. The exact cause is unknown, but there is an association with obesity, diabetes, and pro-inflammatory habits like smoking. The purpose of this systematic review is to appraise existing information on lifestyle modifications, their impact on hidradenitis suppurativa, and identify knowledge gaps. Methods: A systematic review of hidradenitis suppurativa, obesity, smoking, and diet was performed using MEDLINE, CINAHL and PubMED databases. The search strategy yielded seven articles that met inclusion criteria. There was a total of 1,710 patients, four cross-sectional studies (n=1,397), two retrospective studies (n=233), and one case control study (n=80). Article results were synthesized into a table. Results: The severity of hidradenitis suppurativa was most closely related to smoking status and obesity. Alternatively, symptomatic improvement was reported in patients who stopped smoking or reduced their weight. Dietary modifications, specifically following a Mediterranean diet, were also associated with lower self- reported disease severity. Discussion: Recurrence and severity of hidradenitis suppurativa may possibly be mitigated with lifestyle modifications. However, randomized controlled trials are needed to determine how much lifestyle modification independently affects hidradenitis suppurativa.


An EBP Capstone Project submitted to the St. David’s School of Nursing at Texas State University in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in Nursing.


hidradenitis suppurativa, smoking, obesity


Maxwell, J. (2023). Role of lifestyle modifications in the management of Hidradenitis suppurativa in adults: A systematic review [paper]. St. David's School of Nursing, Texas State University.


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