I have pimples on my arms but the doctor says they aren’t acne

Last updated on August 15, 2020


Should I buy some cream for the pimples in my arms? I have told my family doctor about it. but he doesn’t really want to give me a prescription. He says they will go away by themselves. But in the last 4 years, they have only multiplied not decreased. He also says it’s not acne, but those pimples really bother me. What cream should I buy to get rid of those pimples once and for all? I’ve been having pimples in my arm since I was 10 and I can’t stand them anymore. Should I buy something that says it gets rid of pimples even though the doctor said it wasn’t acne?


The problem is that I know less about your skin condition than your doctor since he can see you and I can’t. If it is bothering you, you would need to see a dermatologist (a skin doctor) who would be able to precisely say what is causing the pimples and what can be done to counter the condition.

However, your doctor is right. Pimples are usually caused by over active oil glands or sweat glands which make the surface of your skin stand up. If there is no redness, then it isn’t called acne because there is no infection. If regular (daily) bathing isn’t keeping your skin pores open, then products with salicylic acid will remove the top layer of dead skin cells, reducing the probability of clogged pores. Follow the directions carefully as they can irritate the skin if over used.

Your doctor is also right that it will eventually correct itself, but this usually doesn’t happen until you finish your growth, and you are only about halfway there. So try a soap that contains salicylic acid for a few weeks. If you still don’t see an improvement, see if your parents can take you to a dermatologist to find out what can be used.


Yesterday I developed a sort of a red/black mostly red pimple in the middle of my left armpit. Is this normal?


It sounds like you are describing an ingrown hair. People with very curly or kinky hair are often plagued with them. What happens is that a hair that broke off below the surface of the skin begins to grow back. But because it has a tendency to curl, it curls underneath the surface of the skin, causing what is called a “blackhead.” The opening to the oil sac is stretched open by the hair and the contents get exposed to air, hardening it and darkening its color.

So long as it is not inflamed (red or tender around the area), it will eventually clear itself. However, if it is inflamed, then it means an infection has set in. You can use acne medications that contain benzoyl peroxide to both control the oil production and to kill the bacteria. Or, if it is just a spot or two, sometimes an antibiotic ointment helps. The ointment should be used sparingly since it is an oil product and can make an already oily situation worse. It should get better within a week.


About 3 weeks ago I developed an under the skin pimple in the middle of my left armpit and when I pressed on the pimple with my finger it hurt. But as time went by the pimple went deeper and deeper under my skin sort of like disappearing day by day making it harder to detect if I still had a pimple or not. That was five days ago  Today that I tried to touch it again and it was all gone.
My question is: Should I be worried about it? Because when I pressed on the pimple it hurt and it was an under the skin. Could it be a cancer tumor?


I am amazed at how many young people find something on their bodies and immediately assume that it is the worse thing possible: cancer. Young people can get cancer, but it is extremely rare. And cancer does not disappear on its own.

You are a teenager and one of the plagues of adolescents is having acne — not just on your face, but all over your body. Acne is when one or more of the pores in your skin becomes infected. It gets red, swells a bit, and then generally fades as your immune system battles the cause of the infection. Acne will gradually get worse up through about stage four of development and then begin to fade away. The best thing you can do during this time is to bathe regularly and scrub your skin well.