Stained by sweat

Stained by sweat

If you suffer from excessive sweating, it is prudent to visit the doc’s for a simple treatment, suggests Dr Chytra V Anand 

 Some people are unfortunate to have overactive sweat glands, a syndrome known as hyperhidrosis.

When excessive sweating affects the hands, feet and armpits, it's called primary or focal hyperhidrosis. People with hyperhidrosis may sweat even when the temperature is cool or when they are at rest. 

Primary hyperhidrosis affects two-three percent of the population, yet less than 40 percent of patients with this condition seek medical advice. 

In the majority of primary hyperhidrosis cases, no cause can be found. It seems to run in families.  

Medication

Anticholinergics drugs, such as  glycopyrrolate, help to prevent the stimulation of sweat glands. Beta-blockers or benzodiazepines may help reduce stress-related sweating. Although effective for some patients, these drugs have not been studied as well as other treatments.
 Con: Possible side-effects include dry mouth, dizziness and problems with urination. 

Botox

Botox is FDA approved for the treatment of severe underarm sweating, a condition called primary axillary hyperhidrosis. Small doses of purified botulinum toxin, injected into the underarm, temporarily block the nerves that stimulate sweating. Relief lasts for four-six months and helps control body odour.
 For focal hyperhidrosis, that is excessive sweating on forehead area or face, Meso Botox can be injected into the dermis to decrease sweating.

Con: Possible side-effects include muscle stiffness, muscle weakness and swelling, among many others.

Surgery

In severe cases, a minimally-invasive surgical procedure called Endoscopic Thoracic Sympathectomy (ETS) may be recommended when other treatments fail.

The procedure turns off the signal that tells the body to sweat excessively.
It is usually done on patients whose palms sweat much more heavily than normal. It may also be used to treat extreme sweating of the face. 

Con: ETS does not work as well for those with excessive armpit sweating.
(The writer is a cosmetologist, Kosmoderma skin and laser clinic, Bangalore)

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