Localised hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating) often begins in the adolescent years and can affect the armpits (axillary hyperhidrosis), palms and soles (palmar plantar hyperhidrosis) & face and scalp (craniofacial hyperhidrosis). It is an idiopathic (of unknown cause) condition which is very common and lifelong. It often goes undiagnosed and under treated due a lack of awareness of the condition and its treatment options.
Idiopathic Palmar Plantar hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating from the hands and feet) can be improved with several treatments offered at Perth Dermatology Clinic including antiperspirants; iontophoresis; sweat stopping injections and anticholinergic tablet medications.
Antiperspirants containing aluminium chloride are often insufficient and cause irritancy when treating excessive sweating of the palms and soles, but can be trialled for mild cases.
Iontophoresis delivers an electric current through water, which when applied to the palms or soles, reduces the amount you sweat. Dr Tony Caccetta and Perth Dermatology clinic offer this treatment as a 2-4 week in clinic trial prior to considering purchase of your own at home iontophoresis machine. This treatment usually leads to a 60-70% reduction in sweating with ongoing use. In the long term a 20minute at home treatment weekly may achieve this reduction in sweating. Currently, we consider this the best side effect free, minimally invasive long term solution for palmar and plantar hyperhidrosis management.
Sweat stopping injections often lead to a very significant reduction in sweating lasting for around 2-3 months in most people. Injection into the palms and soles causes discomfort and requires various analgesia techniques to improve the comfort of injection. This treatment if appropriate can be further discussed with Dr Tony Caccetta at Perth Dermatology Clinic. No Medicare rebate is currently available for this treatment, however Private Health Insurance rebates may be sought.
Oral anticholinergic medications can lead to a significant reduction in sweating from all locations, however can sometimes be poorly tolerated dues to side effects or be inappropriate for use in the long term.
If the above conservative measures for treatment of palmar hyperhidrosis are unsuccessful, you will be referred for consideration of endoscopic thoracic sympathectomy (ETS), a surgical procedure to reduce sweating of the palms only. This treatment is considered when other treatments have been tried and proven unsuccessful, as ETS can lead to significant compensatory hyperhidrosis (usually on the trunk) and potential other side effects.