Treatments

People with this excessive or hand sweating condition normally do not search for a treatment from doctors because most of them thought that there are no treatments that exist to minimize the amount of sweat produced by an individual.

Good thing that there are now different forms of hyperhidrosis treatment that patients can rely on in order to free themselves from physical, mental, and emotional consequences caused by excessive sweating.

Many modalities of medical treatment have been used to treat hyperhidrosis. Although, these options are rarely useful in the treatment of severe hyperhidrosis, they should be explored before resorting to more invasive forms of treatment.

Local Measures
Patients with pedal hyperhidrosis can apply foot powder after bathing. Leather shoes and wool socks should not be worn. Rubber and synthetic materials should be avoided.

Topical Agents

  • Aluminum Chloride with Ethyl Alcohol - Drysol is one of the most widely used topical agents, and maybe adequate for some patients with axillary hyperhidrosis. However, in the case of plantar and palmar hyperhidrosis, it is not as effective. Treatment begins by applying the medication to the affected areas of the skin and leaving it on for six hours. This medication mechanically obstructs the eccrine sweat glands pores. This treatment is limited by axillary irritation from the aluminum chloride. The patient must wait one or two days before shaving the medicated areas of the skin. This medication is mostly successful in the case of mild to moderate hyperhidrosis. Short-term results have been satisfactory, but long term results have been less rewarding. The main drawback of this medication is irritation of the skin and failure of therapy for long term use.
  • Odaban. This is a lotion that has been effective in treating some cases of hyperhidrosis.
  • Glutaraldehyde. This chemical can be applied to the feet, and has been known to be effective in treatment of pedal hyperhidrosis. However, it can cause severe browning of the skin, brown staining of clothing, and could be irritating and expensive. It should be applied 2-4 days a week.

Iontophoresis (Drionics)
This is an instrument that applies electrical current to the hand and feet. This procedure coagulates the eccrine gland electrically and has been used with some success in the treatment of palmar and pedal hyperhidrosis. In this procedure, the patient’s affected area is placed in a bucket of water. A current of 15-30 milliamp is applied to the galvanic generator electrodes. This session last for 20 minutes and is repeated for 4-6 times a week. Frequent treatments are necessary and maintenance treatment is done as frequently as necessary. This modality, however, is not practical for axillary hyperhidrosis and facial blushing.

Biofeedback
This is another modality that has been used to treat hyperhidrosis. The success rate depends on the operator and psychological status of the patient.

Medications

  • Anticholinergics (Robinal). There are no known drugs for the specific treatment of primary hyperhidrosis. However, hyperhidrosis can be treated with some success with systemic anti-cholinergies. These drugs have many unpleasant side effects including dilated pupils, constipation, urinary retention and heart palpitation. The most common side effect of these medications is severe dry mouth, which is unacceptable by many patients.
  • Beta-Blockers (Inderal). These medications have systemic anti-sympathetic effects that are helpful in decreasing the body’s sympathetic response. They have been useful in some cases of stress related hyperhidrosis. They also decrease palpitation and tremors, and are mostly useful when taken one or two hours before a stressful situation.
  • Antidepressants and Anti-Anxeity Medications have been used to treat hyperhidrosis. However, it should be noted that depression is not a cause of hyperhidrosis, however, hyperhidrosis can cause depression.
  • Propantheline Bromide (Probanthine). This medication causes a systemic decrease in sympathetic response. Other medical uses include treating high blood pressure and some arrhythmia. This medication should only be administered after a thorough examination of the patient.

Laser Abration
This is totally ineffective for the control of primary hyperhidrosis.

Botox
This medication is derived from a highly deadly botulism toxin. It has been used to paralyze nerve that stimulates the sweat glands. Unfortunately, this treatment is only temporary, is expensive, and has to be repeated after a few months. It works best in the case of axillary hyperhidrosis and is not as practical in the cases of palmar or facial hyperhidrosis or facial blushing.

Psychotherapy
Psychotherapy has been used with very limited success in the treatment of hyperhidrosis and facial blushing. It should be noted that hyperhidrosis and facial blushing are not a psychiatric disorder and any psychological disturbance experienced by patients are caused by hyperhidrosis and facial blushing.

Liposuction
This surgical procedure involving removing the sweat glands by a suction catheter from under the skin. Liposuction has been successfully used in treating axillary hyperhidrosis.