Hyperhidrosis, or excessive sweating, can be a physical and psychological burden. Occuring along the underarms, hands, feet and face, these forms of focal hyperhidrosis can be effectively managed with minimally invasive techniques.
There are two main forms of hyperhidrosis – focal and generalised hyperhidrosis. Both can have underlying causes, ranging from medication, genetic issues, or other underlying medical issues. It is important to manage the underlying issue, but the symptom of sweating itself can easily be managed with topical therapy and botulinum toxin injections.
What Is Botox?
Botox is a neuro-modulator that reduces the activity of targeted muscle groups. Placed into the treated area by means of a fine needle injection, it temporarily reduces the contraction capability of the muscle by reducing nerve signals to the muscle, reducing visible wrinkling.
Injected into the skin, Botulinum Toxin reduces sweat gland activity and tightens the skin. This allows treatment of conditions such as hyperhidrosis.
1. What does the procedure involve?
The procedure involves the manual injection of a calculated number of units of botulinum toxin into the target areas. Pre-procedure numbing cream or icing is done to reduce any discomfort associated with the injection.
2. Is the procedure painful?
The procedure utilises a small needle to introduce the botox, and the injection of the needle itself is painless. The infusion of the fluid produces a slight stinging sensation.
3. How long does each session take?
Regular botox treatments take about 10 to 15 minutes per area.
4. Is there any downtime?
Depending on the site of injection, patients might be left with a slight welt in the skin that can take about 15 to 20 minutes to settle, or might have a tiny bruise that can be camouflaged by makeup.
In general, most patients have no downtime and are able to return to daily activities or work immediately.
5. Are there any possible side effects?
Botox for hyperhidrosis is done superficially in the skin and side effects are uncommon.
6. What can or should I not do after botox?
Any activity that promotes unwanted spread of botox is not recommended for up to 48 hours after treatment. These include:
- Alcohol consumption
- Saunas or hot baths
- Excessive exercise
- Massage over treated areas
6. Are the results from Botox permanent?
No. Botulinum toxin is naturally degraded by the body over 3 to 4 months and sweat glands regain their function over the 3 to 6 months.