George Woodbury MD 3/14/2023
Hyperhidrosis is the medical term for an excessive amount of sweat, often affecting the underarms, the groin, or localized regions of the body such as the back or legs. It can be caused by other medical conditions, such as infections or endocrine disorders, in which case it is called secondary hyperhidrosis, or it can be genetic, whereby it is a trait that runs in certain families, in which case it is called primary hyperhidrosis. This condition can be quite aggravating, both socially and from staining of clothes, so let’s take a look at Hyperhidrosis treatment options, my perspective being that of a Memphis Dermatologist for over 30 years:
Dermatologists first often consider running certain blood tests for people suffering from hyperhidrosis, to look at endocrine, nutritional, or metabolic causes of the excessive sweating. These may include liver and kidney functions, blood counts, and endocrine tests, such as thyroid functions. If the hyperhidrosis is found to be secondary to another condition, then management of that condition will often help the excessive sweating.
Fortunately, over the last 10-15 years, Dermatologists have uncovered a growing number of increasingly effective treatment options for Hyperhidrosis:
For many years, a prescription oral tablet called glycopyrrolate (Robinul® forte), an anticholinergic drug, has proven helpful for management of many patients with hyperhidrosis. In 2018, a promising new form of this category of medications - Qbrexza® - also became available for use on top of the skin
We often use both over-the-counter and prescription aluminum chloride-containing antiperspirants - Certain Dri® and Drysol® - to help to control excessive sweating.
There is an electrical current treatment device that uses a process called iontophoresis to control excessive sweating – a treatment which generally has to be done every day at home for two to three weeks – then at least twice a week.
There is a microwave technology piece of equipment called a Miradry® machine which can often permanently reduce underarm sweating. In many cases, this treatment has to be done on more than one occasion.
For more severe cases, a Dermatologic Surgeon like myself will often consider injections of Botulinum A – or Botox® injections – to prevent the nerves in the affected areas of the body from causing release of excessive amounts of sweat. This therapy often has to be repeated every 6-12 months, and it’s effective in the majority of people treated.
There is also a surgical option – called endoscopic thoracic sympathectomy – which can control more severe cases – but this has to be done under general anesthesia – this treatment having the notable side-effect of promoting excessive sweating in other parts of the body (compensatory hyperhidrosis) – so this neurosurgery option is often considered a last resort.
As President of Big River Silk Skincare, an organic skincare products company, we offer a deep skin cleanser for people with Hyperhidrosis: AmberSoy Soap Gel. Available in Mint, in Lemon, and in No Fragrance Added, this glycerine-based cleanser can be used as a mask to the area of excessive sweating, for 3-5 minutes prior to showering off, to achieve a deeper cleansing. (www.Bigriversilkskincare.com) 1-901-753-0168
I have practiced as a Cordova Dermatologist with Rheumatology and Dermatology Associates since 1993. Or to find a Dermatologist closer to you, go to the American Academy of Dermatology website, AAD.org, then search by zip code under the “Find a Dermatologist” tab.
George Woodbury Jr. M.D.
Dermatologist with Rheumatology and Dermatology Associates
President of Big River Silk Skincare: https://www.Bigriversilkskincare.com
8143 Walnut Grove Road
Cordova TN 38018