Excessive Armpit Sweating
All of us have underarm or armpit sweating. In its physiological and normal level it appears during daytime and goes up and down depending on external temperature, exercise level, and some emotional situations. On the other-hand there are patients (about ½% of the population) that suffer from excessive armpit sweating. In this condition patients have continuous excessive amount of sweat in their armpits not controlled by simple antiperspirants. Those patients suffer from social and functional embarrassments because they have to hide their excessive armpit sweating with constant changing of their clothing or having two to three layers of clothing in order to hide it.
Excessive Armpit Sweating & Hand Sweating
In many situations this excessive armpit sweating comes together with excessive hand sweating. If the commercially available antiperspirants do not help it then there are medicated antiperspirants such as aluminum chloride preparations that might help (Drysol, Maxim). Botox injections became fashionable and an accepted method of treating focal armpit sweating (axillary hyperhidrosis). With this modality injection into the sub-cutaneus tissues of the botulinum toxin (BOTOX) the sweating production can be stopped on a temporary basis. The effect of the injections can last anywhere between 2 to 6 months. It requires repeated injections and at times the body produces some antibodies towards the toxin which shortens the therapeutic effect of the injection. It is also somewhat expensive. If all of those conservative modalities do not help then some surgical options are available.
Leading Technique to Treat Excessive Armpit Sweating
For isolated cases of excessive armpit sweating Dr. Reisfeld performs the axillary suction curretage procedure. In this particular procedure very small cannulas are inserted underneath the skin and with repeated criss cross motions the sweat glands are removed from their location in the superficial layers underneath the skin. The operation is carried out under light general anesthesia. The operation takes about an hour. The pain and the scarring are minimal and patients are able to resume normal activity after a very short time. Side effects such as bleeding, infection, swelling and fluid accumulation can happen but will go away. Wrinkling of the skin in the armpit area is common but with time it smoothes itself out.
To learn more about this procedure please visit Dr. Reisfeld's Armpit Sweating page.