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Treatment of abscesses in the vulva. Conventional open treatment versus primary suture under antibiotic cover.

Seventy patients were treated for a subcutaneous abscess in the vulva. In 35 consecutive patients the abscess was treated conventionally with deroofing of the abscess and wet dressings. In the other 35 consecutive patients the abscess was treated by incision, curettage and primary suture under antibiotic cover with a single dose of clindamycin. In the conventionally treated group the median stay in hospital was 7 days and the median healing time 18 days. In the group treated by primary suture the median stay in hospital was 2 days and the median healing time 7 days (P less than 0.0001). Recurrence of abscess was observed in one patient in each group. No other complications were observed in either group. It is concluded that vulvar abscesses may be treated safely and advantageously by primary suture under antibiotic cover.

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