What is Hyperhidrosis?

Hyperhidrosis, or excessive sweating, is a misery for an estimated 3% of people. It could involve sweating of the underarms (axillary hyperhidrosis) or of the palms and soles of the feet (palmoplantar hyperhidrosis).

Underarm problems tend to start in late adolescence, while palm and sole sweating often begins earlier, around age 13 (on the average). Untreated, these problems may continue throughout life.

Not only is it profoundly embarrassing by causing stains on clothing, body odors affecting relationships and other social interactions it can really cause problems in day-to-day activities such as writing with a pen or trying to grip the steering wheel.

What causes Hyperhidrosis?

Although neurologic, endocrine, infectious, and other systemic diseases can sometimes cause hyperhidrosis, most cases occur in people who are otherwise healthy.

Heat and emotions may trigger hyperhidrosis in some, but many who suffer from hyperhidrosis sweat nearly all their waking hours, regardless of their mood or the weather.

What is the treatment for Hyperhidrosis?

Treatment for this condition is regulated in the United Kingdom. It can only be offered by a CQC regulated clinic.

It would involve a clinical assessment, possibly some blood tests and a judicious stepwise approach to the treatment. Your GP would receive a referral letter outlining the plan of action. This is for your own safety.

The different options available to you are:

  • Over-the-counter antiperspirants containing a low dose of metal salt (usually aluminum) are usually tried first because they are readily available. Antiperspirants containing aluminum chloride (for example Certain Dri) may be more effective when other antiperspirants have failed.
  • Prescription strength antiperspirants, which contain aluminum chloride hexahydrate.
  • Oral medications, Anticholinergics reduce sweating, however they have undesirable side effects for many users.
  • Morpheus 8: A combination of microneedling and localized radiofrequency heat will destroy the sweat glands, effectively eliminating the excessive sweating by causing the glands to stop overproducing sweat.
  • Botulinum toxin has been approved for treating excessive axillary (underarm) sweating
  • miraDry. This technique uses microwave energy to permanently kill sweat glands. (We do not offer MiraDry)
  • Surgery. A procedure called thoracic sympathectomy may be considered as a last resort.

Thoracic sympathectomy is surgical interruption of the sympathetic nerves responsible for sweating. Sympathectomy is an operation intended to destroy part of the nerve supply to the sweat glands in the skin. The surgeon inserts a special endoscopic instrument into the chest between two ribs just below the armpit. Sympathectomy is both effective and risky. Even with newer endoscopic techniques, the complications can include excessive sweating in other parts of the body and lung and nerve problems. As many of these complications are serious and not reversible, this option is rarely used, and then only as a last resort.

We are able to refer you to a qualified surgeon should you choose to go down this route.

Please get in touch if you believe you need help to overcome this condition.