Folliculitis Boils and Carbuncles Symptoms & Causes

LIke ThisLIke ThisLIke ThisLIke ThisLIke This


What are folliculitis, boils and carbuncles?

Folliculitis is the inflammation of hair follicles due to an infection, injury or irritation.

Boils are tender, swollen areas that form around hair follicles, often on the neck, breasts, buttocks and face. Boils are pus-filled lesions that are painful and usually firm. Boils are usually located in the waist area, groin, buttocks and under the arms.

Carbuncles are clusters of boils. These are usually found in the back of the neck or thigh.

What are the symptoms of folliculitis, boils, and carbuncles?

Each child may experience symptoms differently, but folliculitis, boils and carbuncles do have common signs and symptoms.

Symptoms for folliculitis may include:

  • pus in the hair follicle
  • irritated and red follicles
  • damaged hair

Symptoms for boils may include:

  • pus in the center of the boil
  • whitish, bloody discharge from the boil

Symptoms for carbuncles (clusters of boils) may include:

  • pus in the center of the boils
  • whitish, bloody discharge from the boils
  • fever
  • fatigue
Boston Children’s is so much more than a hospital—it’s a community of researchers, clinicians, administrators, support staff, innovators, teachers, patients and families, all working together to make the impossible possible. ”
- Sandra L. Fenwick, President and CEO

Boston Children's Hospital
300 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115
For Patients: 617-355-6000
For Referring Providers: 844-BCH-PEDS | 844-224-7337