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Definition of Folliculitis

  • Medical Author:
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

Folliculitis: An infection or inflammation of the hair follicles of the skin. Inflammation of the hair follicles can occur when the skin is disrupted or inflamed due to a number of conditions, including acne, or injuries, friction from clothing, excessive sweating, or exposure to toxins. The symptoms vary and include small, red bumps or blisters around hair follicles, blisters filled with pus, or itching and tenderness of the involved area. When the deeper parts of the hair follicle are involved a painful lump or mass may be felt.

"Hot tub folliculitis" refers to a folliculitis arising from infection with Pseudomonas bacteria which can be present in hot tubs where the acidity and chlorine levels are not well controlled.

Reviewed on 12/21/2018

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