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Date of last update: 10/18/2017.

Forum Name: Dermatology Topics

Question: Painful hard brown patches in my underarms

 nekabee - Sat Aug 30, 2008 10:07 pm

I have very sensitive skin, and deoderants always made me itch. About a year ago I found an antiperspirant/deoderant that works well and has no scent (Mitchum). I have excessive sweating, so I use alot to try and keep that at bay.

Anyway, about a month ago, my underarms started to itch again, and I discovered a small, hard, brown-gray patch near the front of my underarm. It looked and felt like a bumpy scab, but it wouldn't peel off and never went away, and was painful when I tried to pull it off like a scab, however, it didn't bleed or look like a wound when I did. It looked like it was attached to/part of my skin.

I forgot about it for awhile since I'm not usually looking at my underarms, but a few days ago, I was having itchyness and pain in my underarms, and I discovered that that patch has spread across my underarm. The original patch has gotten bigger, and there is another large patch at the back of my armpit, as well as very small patches running along the crease of my underarm. They itch and occaisonlly hurt very badly--I can't even move my arm at these times. It also looks like this is begining to spread/show up under my other arm as well.

In the past I had a mole on my ribs that became swollen, bleedy and painful. I had it removed and it was benign...but since then I have noticed other little moles that I don't think were there before...I wonder if this has anything to do with it? I also use a sensitive-skin soap to shave,non-moisture strip disposable razors, and have never (that I know )of cut myself.

I take paxil and seasonique, and had a laproscopy last year. I don't know if that will tell you anything...but I wanted to mention it all.

I am really scared about this, and can't afford to see a dermatologist right now. Is there anyone who might know what this is or why? to get rid of it. It really is painful and emabrassing, and I can't wear sleeveless shirts or babydoll sleeves anymore because of this.

I have tried to find something similar on the internet, but I have been unsucessful so far.

Please Help.

 JP4Jah - Sun Jan 25, 2009 3:43 am

Well, I don't really have an answer for you only that I am having the same problem! It's been going on for almost a year now and no matter what I try I can't get rid of it. I did notice that we both use Mitchum deodorant but Ive been using the same kind for years and years so I don't think thats it. I'm thinking maybe a form of exzema??? I started taking Maxzide (water pills) at some point around the onset of this as well as switching to bar soap (palmers cocoa butter soap) but I've no idea if one or the other were the cause. Very likely both. I've recently stopped using the soap and gone back to a gentle liquid soap as before. It's definitely beginning to improve but it is still there making my life almost miserable. I'd suggest drinking more water, use a moisturizer at night and use a gentle liquid soap and not a bar soap at all. Mine looks better but still burns like crazy when applying deodorant, itches constantly (especially at night) and is incredibly unsightly.

Hope this helps!
AND PLEASE let me know if you manage to find a cure!

 casacove - Wed Jan 28, 2009 10:04 am

Ok, I am NOT a medical professional ! I suffered from something close to this. The only thing that ever helped me was T-gel shampoo. Yup, that brown stuff... I tried everything. T-gel did not rid me of the problem but helped reduce the problem. My doctor told me to be less aggresive with hair removal than a razor every morning. So, between the T-gel and Nair for sensative skin I have this under control. I find in the summer it is the worst. I was on anti-biods too but this only reduced the problem never cured it. I still have bouts with the problem but it is much less often and not as intense. I hope this helps...
 Disengage - Tue Feb 03, 2009 1:37 pm


I had the problem, and it turned out to be a fungus. The fungus comes from overactive sweat glands, which I also have. I used a simple fungicide like Lamisil, and it went away in a week. Please try it, because I was convinced it was uncurable, like yourself.

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