Friday, March 02, 2007

Are you thinking of having ETS surgery?

I sometimes receive questions from people who ask me: Should I get ETS surgery?

I'm not the one to answer that because I'm not a doctor. But I can tell you what I've learned from my research and from talking to doctors: ETS is a last resort, and the failure rate is higher than what doctors who perform the surgery like to admit.

If you're thinking of getting the surgery, be sure that you've already exhausted all non-surgical options. Talk to a dermatologist who knows about hyperhidrosis but does not perform ETS surgery. Look on for doctors. You want an unbiased opinion.

I would investigate the following with your doctor, or combinations of the following, in this order:

1) Drysol (a very strong prescription topical antiperspirant)

~and if that doesn't work or is not appropriate for you, ask about~

2) iontophoresis
~and if that doesn't work or is not appropriate for you, ask about~

3) Botox injections
~and if that doesn't work or is not appropriate for you, or if you can't afford it, ask about~

4) what other prescription options are there?

Then, as a last resort, if your sweat is unbearable and getting in the way of your life, then you might consider surgery. But be sure to talk to an unbiased dermatologist or primary care physician who has no financial interest in your getting surgery. Don't start by talking to the surgeon who is going to profit from your operation.

Remember, some people who have the ETS surgery wind up getting compensatory sweating all over their bodies, which they say is much worse. According to the International Hyperhidrosis Society:

"In a study involving 121 patients at the Medical City Hospital of Dallas, Texas, compensatory sweating occurred in more than 80% of the patients undergoing ETS. Similarly, in a Danish study conducted at the Aarhus University Hospital, 90% of the patients undergoing ETS for underarm sweating, reported compensatory sweating, half of whom were forced to change their clothes during the day because of it. "

Please, careful, everyone!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I suffered with sweaty palms and feet for years! I always had a washcloth or paper towel (bounty is the best) in my hands. I could not wear sandals or pretty shoes b/c my feet will always slip out of my shoes. I always had to wear sneakers with thick socks or loafers with thick trouser socks, even in the summer!! When I was a little girl my father made absorbent pencil holders because my hand always slid down the pencil.
Also, before I had the surgery I was always cold, I used to wear several layers of clothes even in the summertime, @ work I always had a heater @ my desk, a blanket wrapped around my legs and a thick sweater over my regular work clothes and still I was freezing. It was a constant battle in the night time b/c I used to turn the heat up while my husband lay next to me sweating an upset:-(

I found a great surgeon in Dallas, TX who performed the "miracle" surgery on 12/10/19, since then my palms have been completely dry, my feet still sweat a little bit. You should see a thoracic surgeon in your area that specializes in this condition. The surgery was not painful, I had it done on Thursday and was back to work on Monday! It took all of 1 1/2 hrs. I'm a changed woman! I had a Laparoscopic procedure; with 5 small incisions (2 on the left and 3 on the right) you can barely see the incision scar! He used the bonding glue to close the incision (no stitches & no staples).

If you don't want to have the surgery u can have your doctor prescribe "Drysol" it's a prescription deodorant that u can rub on your hands/feet or you can get Botox injections. Both of these are not a permanent fix but it should help you. I don't think Botox will be covered by medical insurance.

I met an old man in his 70's who was holding his cane with a washcloth because of his sweaty palm condition; I didn't want that to be me. I had the surgery and nowI have dry hands.