What is hyperhidrosis?
Hyperhidrosis is a condition which affects both men and women, causing excessive sweating in the underarms or other areas of the body. Sweating tends to occur in these individuals regardless of external factors, such as a rise in the ambient temperature or an increase in exercise.
Individuals who suffer with hyperhidrosis are often self-conscious in social situations, and may suffer from staining and odor. In addition, anxiety and stress may exacerbate the condition.
The exact mechanism of hyperhidrosis – that is, why it occurs in some individuals – is not completely understood, and current treatments include the use of dress shields and prescription antiperspirants, which may or may not be effective in these individuals, and injections with BOTOX®. BOTOX® contains botulinum toxin, which is used in cosmetic procedures to treat dynamic wrinkles which occur as a result of muscle contractions. When injected into the sweat glands, BOTOX® acts to prevent the glands from releasing perspiration.
Who is a candidate for non-surgical hyperhidrosis BOTOX® treatment?
Non-surgical BOTOX®treatment for the control of excessive sweating, or hyperhidrosis, can be an ideal procedure for any man or woman who experience the condition, which can necessitate the use of dress shields and multiple daily changes of clothes, and may or may not respond to prescription antiperspirant products.
Which areas of the body is the hyperhidrosis BOTOX® treatment useful for?
BOTOX® treatment for hyperhidrosis is usually performed most frequently in the underarm area, but may be used in other areas of the body where excessive perspiration is a problem.
Who is not a candidate for non-surgical hyperhidrosis BOTOX® treatment?
Generally, BOTOX®treatment for hyperhidrosis is not suitable for men and women with allergies to BOTOX®; those with a neuromuscular disease; individuals with an infection in the injection site; or individuals who are taking antibiotics and some other medications which may interfere with neuromuscular transmission.
Is the sweat reduction permanent?
Sweat reduction with BOTOX® injections is not permanent, and treatment usually needs to be repeated every 6 to 8 months to maintain results. Your specialist can recommend a treatment program which is suited to your individual needs.
How is the BOTOX® treatment performed?
Prior to the injection treatment with BOTOX®, a topical anesthetic will be applied to numb the treatment area in order to reduce the potential discomfort of the multiple injections which are required during treatment. Once the area is dry, BOTOX® injections are applied directly into individual sweat glands in the treatment area. In most individuals, 15 to 20 individual injections are given using a very fine needle, and the BOTOX® is injected just beneath the surface of the skin. Most procedures take about 15 minutes to complete, and may be accompanied by minor discomfort or pressure in the treatment area during the injections.
What is the recovery from hyperhidrosis BOTOX® treatment like?
Recovery is relatively easy and uneventful, although some individuals may experience injection site discomfort and bleeding in the treatment area. In addition, side effects may include excessive sweating outside of the treated areas, sore throat, headache, fever, neck or back pain, anxiety, and itching.
Once the injections take effect, you may be able to stop using underarm dress and shirt shields and can usually switch from a prescription antiperspirant to a non-prescription product.
In some instances, when injections miss sweat glands intended for treatment, there may be some continued sweating.
Any individual who does not experience a marked reduction in perspiration should see their doctor for further discussion.
When will I begin to see results?
You should begin to see significant results within 4 weeks of the initial treatment.
How many sessions of BOTOX® are needed?
Usually, only one treatment session is required, although it will need to be repeated when the effects wear off. In some cases, some glands may not be effectively treated, and may require an additional session. Otherwise, you can expect to need to have the treatment repeated every 6 to 8 months, although some men and women report effects lasting as long as 12 months.
When can one return to work after BOTOX® hyperhidrosis treatment?
Men and women can return to work immediately after the procedure.
What are advantages of BOTOX® over other procedures?
BOTOX® is a relatively simple procedure which effectively blocks excessive sweating though an outpatient procedure which requires no downtime. The injections work by blocking the release of specific chemicals that cause sweat glands to contract and release sweat. BOTOX® injections may take a few days to begin to work, but once they do the sweating is markedly reduced. Unlike topical prescription products, BOTOX® injections do not need to be reapplied on a daily basis, and last for several months.
Is BOTOX® for the treatment of hyperhidrosis approved for use in USA?
Yes, BOTOX® was approved by the FDA in 2004 for the treatment of hyperhidrosis.