Hyperhidrosis, also called polyhidrosis or sudorrhea, can be a condition described as excessive sweating. The sweating could affect only one specific area or even the entire body.
However, not life-threatening, it may be uncomfortable and cause embarrassment and psychological trauma. In this article, we shall look at the causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and management of Hyperhidrosis.
What is hyperhidrosis?
Fast facts on hyperhidrosis
Here are a few key points about hyperhidrosis. More detail and supporting information is incorporated in the main article.
Hyperhidrosis is likely to begin during adolescence
An estimated 7.8 million Americans have hyperhidrosis
Most commonly, the feet, hands, face, and armpits suffer
There are numerous of remedies that could reduce symptoms
Precisely what is hyperhidrosis?
Hyperhidrosis can be psychologically damaging.
The unnecessary sweating linked to hyperhidrosis is commonly most active in the hands, feet, armpits, as well as the groin due to their relatively high power of sweat glands.
Focal hyperhidrosis: As soon as the sweating in excess is localized. As an example, palmoplantar hyperhidrosis is excessive sweating from the palms and soles.
Generalized hyperhidrosis: Excessive sweating affects the entire body.
Hyperhidrosis could be present from birth or might develop in the future. However, most instances of sweating in excess have a tendency to start during the person’s teenage years.
The disorder may be as a result of a fundamental medical condition, or do not have apparent cause:
Primary idiopathic hyperhidrosis: “Idiopathic” means “of unknown cause.” In the vast majority of cases, the hyperhidrosis is localized.
Secondary hyperhidrosis: A person sweats too much as a result of an underlying health condition, like obesity, gout, menopause, a tumor, mercury poisoning, diabetes mellitus, or hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid gland).
In accordance with the International Hyperhidrosis Association, approximately 2.8 percent of Americans suffer from hyperhidrosis; that’s around 7.8 million people.
For some, hyperhidrosis symptoms are extremely severe that this becomes embarrassing, causing discomfort and anxiety. The patient’s career choices, leisure time activities, personal relationships, self-image, and emotional well-being could be affected.
Fortunately, there are several options which may treat symptoms effectively. The largest challenge for hyperhidrosis is the significant number of individuals who do not seek medical health advice, either because of embarrassment or as they do not know that effective treatment exists.
Symptoms of hyperhidrosis
Hyperhidrosis is defined as sweating that disrupts normal activities. Instances of excessive sweating occur at least one time a week for no clear reason and get an impact on self confidence or day to day activities.
Symptoms of hyperhidrosis could include:
Clammy or wet palms of the hands
Clammy or wet soles from the feet
Noticeable sweating that soaks through clothing
Those with hyperhidrosis might feel the following:
Irritating and painful skin problems, including fungal or bacterial infections
Worrying about having stained clothing
Unwilling to make physical contact
Socially withdrawn, sometimes creating depression
Select employment where physical contact or human interaction will not be a task requirement
Spend a lot of time daily coping with sweat, including changing clothes, wiping, placing napkins or pads underneath the arms, washing, wearing bulky, or dark clothes
Worry more than other people about body odor
Experts will not be certain why, but sweating in excess while sleeping is not common for people who have primary hyperhidrosis (the type not associated with any underlying medical problem).
Causes of hyperhidrosis
The causes of primary hyperhidrosis are not well-understood; alternatively, secondary hyperhidrosis has a long list of known causes.
Reasons behind primary hyperhidrosis
[Sweaty man in grey shirt]
Primary hyperhidrosis appears to possess a genetic component.
People utilized to think that primary hyperhidrosis was linked to the patient’s mental and emotional state, that this condition was psychological and simply affected stressed, anxious, or nervous individuals.
However, recent research has demonstrated that people who have primary hyperhidrosis are no prone to feelings of anxiety, nervousness, or emotional stress than the other population when subjected to the same triggers.
In reality, it is the other way round – the emotional and mental feelings gone through by many patients with hyperhidrosis are as a result of excessive sweating.
Reports have also shown that certain genes be a factor in hyperhidrosis, so that it is look more inclined could possibly be inherited. The majority of patients with primary hyperhidrosis possess a sibling or parent together with the condition.
Causes of secondary hyperhidrosis
Spinal cord injury
Hyperthyroidism – an overactive thyroid gland
Some cancers, like Hodgkin’s disease
Some infections – HIV, malaria, TB (tuberculosis)
Some medications, including some antidepressants, anticholinesterases (for Alzheimer’s disease), pilocarpine (for glaucoma), propranolol (for high blood pressure)
Initially, a doctor may try to eliminate any underlying conditions, like an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism) or low blood glucose (hypoglycemia) by ordering blood and urine tests.
Patients is going to be asked concerning the patterns with their sweating – which body parts suffer, how frequently sweating episodes occur, and whether sweating occurs while sleeping.
The person may be asked a number of questions, or must fill out a questionnaire regarding the impact of excessive sweating; questions could include:
Would you carry anything around to deal with instances of excessive sweating, like napkins, antiperspirants, towels, or pads?
Does hyperhidrosis affect your behavior or mental state when you are in public areas?
Has hyperhidrosis had any influence on your employment?
Maybe you have lost a buddy on account of hyperhidrosis?
How many times would you improve your clothing?
How often will you wash or have got a shower/bath?
How many times do you reckon about sweating in excess?
Thermoregulatory sweat test: a powder that is understanding of moisture is used to the skin. When excessive sweating occurs at room temperature, the powder changes color. The individual is going to be in contact with high heat and humidity in a sweat cabinet, which triggers sweating throughout the entire body.
When subjected to heat, individuals who do not possess hyperhidrosis tend never to sweat excessively inside the palms in their hands, but patients with hyperhidrosis do. This test likewise helps the doctor determine the degree of the disorder.
Some alterations in daily activity and lifestyle may help improve symptoms:
Antiperspirants – deodorants do not stop sweating, but antiperspirants sprays do. Some prescription antiperspirants include aluminum chloride, which plugs the sweat glands.
Armpit shields – pads worn in the armpit to guard a garment from perspiration.
Clothing – certain synthetic fibers, like nylon, may worsen symptoms. Loose clothing is preferable.
Shoes – synthetic materials are more likely to worsen symptoms. Natural materials, for example leather, are recommended.
Socks – some socks are better at absorbing moisture, like thick, soft ones created from natural fibers.
If the measures mentioned previously will not be effective enough, a physician may refer the individual to some skin specialist (dermatologist), who may recommend:
Iontophoresis – the hands and feet 73dexlpky submerged inside a bowl of water. A painless electric current is passed with the water. Most people need 2 to 4 20-half hour treatments.
Botulinum toxin (Botox injections) – Botox injections block the nerves that trigger the sweat glands. Patients with hyperhidrosis might require several injections for effective results.
Anticholinergic drugs – these medications inhibit the transmission of parasympathetic nerve impulses. Patients generally notice a marked improvement in symptoms within about 2 weeks.
ETS (Endoscopic thoracic sympathectomy) – this surgical intervention is simply recommended in severe cases that have not responded for some other treatments. The nerves that carry messages for the sweat glands are cut.
ETS are often used to treat Iontophoresis Machine from the face, hands or armpits. ETS is not really suggested for treating hyperhidrosis in the feet because of the risk of permanent sexual dysfunction.