Hyperhidrosis is a disorder that defines individuals who sweat more than the body would normally need to maintain optimal temperature. It affects approximately 3% of the population.
Hyperhidrosis affects work productivity, confidence, social comfort, emotional well being and wardrobe choices. Studies show that hyperhidrosis impacts quality of life similar to or even greater than other well-known dermatological conditions, such as severe acne or psoriasis.
It has also been shown that only 38% of hyperhidrosis sufferers talk to a health care professional about their condition. People rarely seek help because many are unaware that excessive sweating is a treatable medical disorder, usually covered by medical insurance.
What causes hyperhidrosis?
There are two types of hyperhidrosis.
Focal hyperhidrosis: also known as primary hyperhidrosis, has an unknown cause. This type of hyperhidrosis is localized to one or more of the following areas:
Underarms (axillary hyperhidrosis)
Hands (palmar hyperhidrosis)
Face (facial hyperhidrosis)
Although this type of hyperhidrosis has an unknown cause, the way it affects sufferers appears to be related to over-activity of the central nervous system thereby causing an overactive stimulation of local sweat glands.
Generalized hyperhidrosis: also known as secondary hyperhidrosis is actually caused by another underlying condition (e.g. endocrine disorders, menopause, obesity, nerve damage, and rarely, some types of drugs). This type of hyperhidrosis generally occurs over the whole body and is usually treated by addressing the underlying condition. Therefore, the vast majority of information contained within this brochure pertains to treatment of focal hyperhidrosis.
There are several ways to treat hyperhidrosis. Many of these treatments are covered by medical plans. In order to find the best treatment for you, speak to a physician who specializes in sweat management. A consultation with one of these physicians will allow you to find the best treatment for you.
Possible treatment options:
Botulinum toxin type A
Botox works by blocking the communication between the sympathetic nerves and the sweat glands.
Clinical studies show that Botox injections produce a 80 – 90% reduction in sweat production. For most people it lasts for approximately six months.
A sweat test is performed to mark out the problem areas and very fine gauge insulin needs are used to administer the treatment.
Usually no analgesia is required. Botox injections have a well documented safety profile, and are used in a wide variety of medical conditions such as cerebral palsy.
Call Husam Elias MD FACS for Sweat management consultation at 818-696-4425.