Hyperhidrosis, often known as polyhidrosis or sudorrhea, can be a condition seen as a excessive sweating. The sweating may affect merely one specific area or the entire body.
While not life-threatening, it can be uncomfortable and cause embarrassment and psychological trauma. In this article, we are going to look at the causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and management of hyperhidrosis.
Exactly what is hyperhidrosis?
Fast facts on hyperhidrosis
Below are a few key points about hyperhidrosis. More detail and supporting information is within the main article.
Hyperhidrosis has a tendency to begin during adolescence
An estimated 7.8 million Americans have hyperhidrosis
Most often, the feet, hands, face, and armpits suffer
There are numerous of remedies that will reduce symptoms
What is hyperhidrosis?
Hyperhidrosis may be psychologically damaging.
The excessive sweating linked to hyperhidrosis is usually most active in the hands, feet, armpits, and the groin because of the relatively high concentration of sweat glands.
Focal hyperhidrosis: As soon as the excessive sweating is localized. By way of example, palmoplantar hyperhidrosis is sweating in excess of the palms and soles.
Generalized hyperhidrosis: Sweating in excess affects the entire body.
Hyperhidrosis may be present from birth or might develop later on. However, many cases of excessive sweating tend to start throughout a person’s teen years.
The condition might be due to an actual health condition, or have no apparent cause:
Primary idiopathic hyperhidrosis: “Idiopathic” means “of unknown cause.” In the vast majority of cases, the hyperhidrosis is localized.
Secondary hyperhidrosis: Anyone sweats too much because of a fundamental health condition, for example obesity, gout, menopause, a tumor, mercury poisoning, diabetes, or hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid gland).
According to the International Hyperhidrosis Association, approximately 2.8 percent of Americans are affected by hyperhidrosis; that’s around 7.8 million people.
For some, hyperhidrosis symptoms are incredibly severe it becomes embarrassing, causing discomfort and anxiety. The patient’s career choices, free time activities, personal relationships, self-image, and emotional well-being could be affected.
Fortunately, there are many options that may treat symptoms effectively. The largest challenge for treating hyperhidrosis will be the significant number of people that do not seek health advice, either as a result of embarrassment or because they do not recognize that effective treatment exists.
Signs of hyperhidrosis
Hyperhidrosis is identified as sweating that disrupts normal activities. Instances of sweating in excess occur one or more times weekly for no clear reason and also have an impact on dating life or daily activities.
Signs and symptoms of hyperhidrosis might 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, such as fungal or bacterial infections
Worrying about having stained clothing
Unwilling to make physical contact
Socially withdrawn, sometimes resulting in depression
Select employment where physical contact or human interaction is not really a task requirement
Spend a substantial amount of time every day working with sweat, for example changing clothes, wiping, placing napkins or pads within the arms, washing, wearing bulky, or dark clothes
Worry 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 (the type not related to any underlying medical condition).
Causes of hyperhidrosis
What causes primary hyperhidrosis are not well-understood; on the other hand, secondary hyperhidrosis has a lot of known causes.
Causes of primary hyperhidrosis
[Sweaty man in grey shirt]
Primary hyperhidrosis appears to experience a genetic component.
People accustomed to believe that primary hyperhidrosis was connected to the patient’s mental and emotional state, that the condition was psychological and merely 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 open to a similar triggers.
Actually, this is basically the other way round – the emotional and mental feelings gone through by many patients with hyperhidrosis are as a result of sweating in excess.
Studies have also shown that certain genes be involved in hyperhidrosis, making it look very likely could possibly be inherited. The majority of patients with primary hyperhidrosis use a sibling or parent together with the condition.
Reasons for secondary hyperhidrosis
Hyperthyroidism – an overactive thyroid gland
Some cancers, for example 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, your doctor may try to eliminate any underlying conditions, including an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism) or low blood glucose (hypoglycemia) by ordering blood and urine tests.
Patients will probably be asked concerning the patterns in their sweating – which areas of the body suffer, the frequency of which sweating episodes occur, and whether sweating occurs while sleeping.
The sufferer may be asked a number of questions, or have to fill out a questionnaire about the impact of excessive sweating; questions could include:
Would you carry anything around to handle episodes of excessive sweating, including napkins, antiperspirants, towels, or pads?
Does hyperhidrosis affect your behavior or mental state when you are in public areas?
Has hyperhidrosis had any effect on your employment?
Have you lost a colleague due to hyperhidrosis?
The frequency of which will you make positive changes to clothing?
How many times can you wash or have got a shower/bath?
The frequency of which do you reckon about excessive sweating?
Thermoregulatory sweat test: a powder that is sensitive to moisture is used to the skin. When excessive sweating occurs at room temperature, the powder changes color. The patient is then open to high heat and humidity in a sweat cabinet, which triggers sweating through the entire body.
When in contact with heat, people who do not have hyperhidrosis tend never to sweat excessively inside the palms of their hands, but patients with hyperhidrosis do. This test can also help your physician determine the severity of the disorder.
Some alterations in daily activity and lifestyle could 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 within the armpit to guard a garment from perspiration.
Clothing – certain synthetic fibers, including nylon, may worsen symptoms. Loose clothing is preferable.
Shoes – synthetic materials are more inclined to worsen symptoms. Natural materials, like leather, are recommended.
Socks – some socks are better at absorbing moisture, such as thick, soft ones created from natural fibers.
In case the measures mentioned previously are certainly not effective enough, your doctor may refer the sufferer into a skin specialist (dermatologist), who may recommend:
Iontophoresis – the hands and feet 73dexlpky submerged in a bowl water. A painless electric current is passed through the water. Most sufferers 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 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 which may have not responded for some other treatments. The nerves that carry messages towards the sweat glands are cut.
ETS enables you to treat iontophoresis machine from the face, hands or armpits. ETS is not recommended for treating hyperhidrosis in the feet due to probability of permanent sexual dysfunction.