Excessive Sweating

Excessive sweating (Hyperhidrosis) affects millions of people around the world – nearly 3% of the population according to some studies. The level of understanding and awareness of hyperhidrosis in Australia is very low – probably even lower than it is in the United States and Canada, even amongst medical professionals. Sweating is a normal physiological phenomenon, but abnormal or excessive sweating is when you are sweating excessively at all times in different external conditions.

What is hyperhidrosis?

Hyperhidrosis, is an excessive sweating condition that affects  people all around the world. Uncontrolled sweating can occur in various part so of the body including underarms, feet and hands. Although stress and high temperatures can increase sweating, they do not cause hyperhidrosis. Hyperhidrosis may be hereditary or a physiological condition that stops the body from properly regulating its temperature.

Social impact of excessive sweating (hyperhidrosis)

It is difficult for non-sufferers to imagine the social awkwardness and embarrassment that this condition can cause. A person who experiences excessive underarm sweating (axillary hyperhidrosis) may be extremely self-conscious in everyday social and work situations that require them to mingle closely with others. For many sufferers the constant anxiety regarding too much underarm sweat can affect not only their personal and social lives but their professional lives as well.

Can excessive sweating (hyperhidrosis) be treated?

There are several methods for treating hyperhidrosis. Most people who are reading this would already have tried a number of different antiperspirants. Iontophoresis is an effective but perhaps cumbersome treatment option but this is usually not readily available in Australia,

Dr Bernard Leung prefers the use of injections, commonly used to smooth out wrinkles (the same substance used in anti-wrinkle injections, which we are not allowed to mention by name under TGA rules). This has the effect of temporarily paralysing the sweat glands.

Other treatments include liposuction to the armpits. This works when the liposuction cannula is scraped against the under surface of the skin, thereby destroying sweat glands. Its effect is somewhat less predictable than with injections and there is a higher complication rate. The last resort is a surgical procedure called Endoscopic Thoracic Sympathectomy (ETS Surgery). It is not commonly performed and is deemed as a last resort.

How long do treatments last?

After your first treatment, the effects of the treatment last an average of seven months. However, the amount of time the treatment remains effective may vary from person to person. It is recommended when symptoms begin to return you should come back in to see Dr Bernard Leung for another assessment and treatment.

Are there any side effects?

The product used to treat hyperhidrosis is used to treat a variety of conditions including movement disorders in head, neck, shoulders and face, and cerebral palsy in children.

As with all medicines, the product used may cause some side effects. In the amounts used for the treatment of hyperhidrosis , the side effects are usually temporary and localised to the area of injection. The most commoon side effects for primary hyperhidrosis are perceived increase in sweating in areas other than the underarms, pain at the injection site, pain and hot flushes.

What is the product used to treat hyperhidrosis?

The product used is a natural, purified protein that temporarily blocks the release of a chemical that signals perspiration. This helps to reduce excessive sweating. The active ingredient is derived from bacteria in much the same way penicillin is derived from mould. It is manufactured in sterile laboratory conditions. The product is a prescription-only medicine and treatment is only available from a qualified medical professional. It is registered for the treatment of severe axillary hyperhidrosis (excessive underarm sweating). At Facial Artistry Dr Leung will consult you and perform the treatment.

What does the treatment involve?

Treatment for hyperhidrosis is a non-surgical procedure whereby a small amount of product is administered into the skin of the armpits using a very fine needle. Generally, the procedure takes around 20 minutes. Discomfort is usually minimal and brief.

It usually takes about 7 days for the treatment to take full effect.

How much does a treatment for excessive sweating (hyperhidrosis) cost?

We understand you are curious to know how much the procedure you are thinking of having might cost.

The truth is that with the cost of many procedures vary considerably depending on different factors. We therefore believe it is unethical to give a cost estimate without gaining a proper understanding of your needs. Your face, your skin and your expectations are different to anybody else’s. We want to plan treatments based on your needs.

Our philosophy is simple. We want you to be fully informed, we want you to understand all your options and have one accurate price quoted once. Our experience tells us  that this is what most of our clients want too.

To request an appointment with Dr Bernard Leung to discuss your suitability for this treatment please email us or call us on 02 6255 8988.