Hyperhidrosis is the medical term for excessive sweating. It refers to any abnormal sweating, but not related to temperature. Regular antiperspirants don’t work well for those with this condition.
Botulinum Toxin injections are a new treatment option for people with hyperhidrosis. You may be a candidate for Botulinum Toxin if your sweating fails to improve with prescription antiperspirants. It may also be used “off-label” to reduce sweating in other areas, such as the hands, feet, and face.
Botulinum Toxin works by blocking the nerves responsible for activating your sweat glands. Normally, your nervous system activates your sweat glands when your body temperature rises. This is how your body automatically cools itself. In people with hyperhidrosis, however, the nerves that signal the sweat glands are overactive.
When you receive Botulinum Toxin injections directly into the area of your body that commonly sweats, your overactive nerves are essentially relaxed. When your nerves can’t signal your sweat glands, you don’t sweat. However, Botulinum Toxin only prevents sweating in the specific area where it’s injected.
You can resume your normal activities immediately after receiving Botulinum Toxin injections. It will take between two and seven days for you to stop sweating in the treated area. It can take two weeks for total dryness.
The effects of Botulinum Toxin are temporary (4-6 months). For underarm sweating, dryness can last anywhere from four to fourteen months. Results may not last as long for the hands and feet, and you may need to repeat your treatment in about six months.
About two weeks after your treatment, once you have seen the full effects of the Botulinum Toxin, you should see your doctor for a follow-up appointment. At this appointment your doctor can perform any “touch ups” of missed spots.
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