Hyperhidrosis, often known as polyhidrosis or sudorrhea, is a condition observed as sweating in excess. The sweating can impact just one single specific area or perhaps the whole body.
While not life-threatening, it may be uncomfortable and cause embarrassment and psychological trauma. In this post, we shall glance at the causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment of Hyperhidrosis.
What is hyperhidrosis?
Fast facts on hyperhidrosis
Below are a few key points about hyperhidrosis. More detail and supporting information is in the main article.
Hyperhidrosis is likely to begin during adolescence
Approximately 7.8 million Americans have hyperhidrosis
Most frequently, the feet, hands, face, and armpits are affected
There are a number of remedies that can reduce symptoms
What is hyperhidrosis?
Hyperhidrosis may be psychologically damaging.
The unnecessary sweating associated with hyperhidrosis is generally most active in the hands, feet, armpits, and the groin due to their relatively high concentration of sweat glands.
Focal hyperhidrosis: When the sweating in excess is localized. As an example, palmoplantar hyperhidrosis is sweating in excess in the palms and soles.
Generalized hyperhidrosis: Sweating in excess affects the entire body.
Hyperhidrosis can be present from birth or might develop later in life. However, most cases of excessive sweating often start throughout a person’s teenage years.
The disorder may be on account of an actual health condition, or have no apparent cause:
Primary idiopathic hyperhidrosis: “Idiopathic” means “of unknown cause.” In nearly all cases, the hyperhidrosis is localized.
Secondary hyperhidrosis: The individual sweats excessive due to a fundamental health issue, including obesity, gout, menopause, a tumor, mercury poisoning, diabetes, 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 incredibly severe that this becomes embarrassing, causing discomfort and anxiety. The patient’s career choices, extra time activities, personal relationships, self-image, and emotional well-being could be affected.
Fortunately, there are many options which may treat symptoms effectively. The most significant challenge for treating hyperhidrosis may be the significant amount of people that do not seek medical advice, either because of embarrassment or because they do not recognize that effective treatment exists.
Indications of hyperhidrosis
Hyperhidrosis is identified as sweating that disrupts normal activities. Episodes of excessive sweating occur at least once a week for no clear reason and also have an effect on social interaction or daily activities.
Symptoms of hyperhidrosis could include:
Clammy or wet palms of the hands
Clammy or wet soles in 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
Hesitant to make physical contact
Socially withdrawn, sometimes leading to depression
Select employment where physical contact or human interaction is not a job requirement
Spend a great deal of time daily coping with sweat, including changing clothes, wiping, placing napkins or pads within the arms, washing, wearing bulky, or dark clothes
Worry a lot more than other folks about body odor
Experts usually are not certain why, but sweating in excess while asleep is not common for those who have primary hyperhidrosis (what type not linked to any underlying condition).
Reasons behind hyperhidrosis
The sources of primary hyperhidrosis will not be well-understood; however, secondary hyperhidrosis has a lot of known causes.
Reasons behind primary hyperhidrosis
[Sweaty man in grey shirt]
Primary hyperhidrosis appears to have a genetic component.
People accustomed to feel that primary hyperhidrosis was linked to the patient’s mental and emotional state, that the condition was psychological and just affected stressed, anxious, or nervous individuals.
However, recent reports have demonstrated that people with primary hyperhidrosis are no prone to feelings of anxiety, nervousness, or emotional stress than the other population when subjected to exactly the same triggers.
In reality, this is basically the other way round – the emotional and mental feelings felt by many patients with hyperhidrosis are because of the sweating in excess.
Research has also shown that particular genes play a role in hyperhidrosis, so that it is look more likely that it could be inherited. The majority of patients with primary hyperhidrosis use a sibling or parent with the condition.
Factors behind secondary hyperhidrosis
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 elevated blood pressure)
Initially, a health care provider may try to rule out any underlying conditions, such as an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism) or low blood glucose levels (hypoglycemia) by ordering blood and urine tests.
Patients will likely be asked concerning the patterns with their sweating – which body parts suffer, how many times sweating episodes occur, and whether sweating occurs during sleep.
The individual may be asked a series of questions, or must complete a questionnaire regarding the impact of excessive sweating; questions could include:
Will you carry anything around to deal with episodes of excessive sweating, such as napkins, antiperspirants, towels, or pads?
Does hyperhidrosis affect your behavior or mental state when you find yourself in public places?
Has hyperhidrosis had any result on your employment?
Perhaps you have lost a colleague due to hyperhidrosis?
The frequency of which can you improve your clothing?
How often would you wash or have got a shower/bath?
How many times do you think about sweating in excess?
Thermoregulatory sweat test: a powder that is understanding of moisture is applied on the skin. When sweating in excess occurs at room temperature, the powder changes color. The patient will then be subjected to high heat and humidity in the sweat cabinet, which triggers sweating during the entire whole body.
When open to heat, people who do not have hyperhidrosis tend to never sweat excessively in the palms of their hands, but patients with hyperhidrosis do. This test likewise helps the doctor determine the degree of the condition.
Some alterations in daily activity and lifestyle may help improve symptoms:
Antiperspirants – deodorants usually do not stop sweating, but antiperspirants sprays do. Some prescription antiperspirants include aluminum chloride, which plugs the sweat glands.
Armpit shields – pads worn from the armpit to guard a garment from perspiration.
Clothing – certain synthetic fibers, like nylon, may worsen symptoms. Loose clothing is better.
Shoes – synthetic materials are more inclined to worsen symptoms. Natural materials, for example leather, are recommended.
Socks – some socks are better at absorbing moisture, such as thick, soft ones made from natural fibers.
When the measures stated previously are certainly not effective enough, a doctor may refer the person to your skin specialist (dermatologist), who may recommend:
Iontophoresis – the hands and feet 73dexlpky submerged within a bowl of water. A painless electric current is passed from the water. Most people need two to four 20-thirty minute treatments.
Botulinum toxin (Botox injections) – Botox injections block the nerves that trigger the sweat glands. Patients with hyperhidrosis may require several injections for effective results.
Anticholinergic drugs – these medications inhibit the transmission of parasympathetic nerve impulses. Patients generally notice a noticable difference in symptoms within about 2 weeks.
ETS (Endoscopic thoracic sympathectomy) – this surgical intervention is merely recommended in severe cases which may have not responded for some other treatments. The nerves that carry messages on the sweat glands are cut.
ETS may be used to treat iontophoresis of your face, hands or armpits. ETS is not appropriate for treating hyperhidrosis in the feet as a result of probability of permanent sexual dysfunction.