Hyperhidrosis is a disease that causes increased sweating in the soles of the feet, armpits, palms, and face, and can be resolved by surgery in up to 80% of cases.

According to Dr. Olga Rodríguez, head of the Hyperhidrosis Unit at USP San Camilo, excess sweating, which seriously affects at least 350,000 people, rather than having consequences on the patient's health, has a negative impact on their social life, deteriorating their quality of life.

In addition, says the specialist, those affected feel embarrassed by the problem and do not go to the doctor, which affects their daily lives, limiting their activities, decreasing their self-esteem, and even causing depressive disorders.

The cause of hyperhidrosis, which affects both sexes equally and has a higher incidence in people between the ages of 20 and 40 years, is not known, but it is related to stimulation of the sympathetic nerve. In situations of stress or high temperatures, the condition worsens, and patients are particularly concerned about excessive sweating in the armpits and palms, where it is more evident.

Surgical intervention interrupts the nerve fibers of the sympathetic nerve using the technique known as sympatholysis or sympathicotomy (which consists of cutting them), or placing a metal clip on these fibers. This surgery is performed under general anesthesia, practicing one or two small incisions at the level of the armpit, through which a camera and everything necessary to carry out the procedure is introduced into the thorax. The patient usually stays in the hospital for 24 hours, although two or three hours after the intervention he is sufficiently recovered to go home.

The patient tries several options before going to the doctor's office, and some have even had to leave work because of excessive sweating

The expert explains that the patient always tries several options before going to the doctor, and adds that some cases are really desperate because they have come to quit the job because of the problem that involves the excess of sweat. In his opinion, the surgical technique could be the definitive solution for the most serious cases. At the moment, the only side effect that presents is a slight compensatory hyperhidrosis in the soles of the feet, which does not interfere in the patient's daily activities.


Hyperhidrosis Surgery for Children: Thoracoscopic Sympathectomy (November 2019).