Understanding Excessive Sweating (Hyperhidrosis)
Hyperhidrosis is a medical condition in which a person sweats excessively and unpredictably; regardless of the temperature or level of physical activity. In some people the body’s mechanism for cooling itself is overactive, causing sweating that is several times greater than is necessary or normal. This level of sweating can be embarrassing, anxiety producing, and disruptive to all aspects of a person’s life.
Types of Hyperhidrosis
Primary hyperhidrosis refers to excessive sweating that is not caused by another medical condition, nor is it a side effect of medications. The excessive sweating is the medical condition. Primary hyperhidrosis occurs on very specific parts of the body (typically the hands, feet, underarms, and head), and typically affects both the left and right sides of the focal area(s). Primary hyperhidrosis often begins in childhood or adolescence and it may be inherited. It is estimated by the National Institute of Health (NIH) that primary hyperhidrosis affects 2 - 3% of the population; yet less than 40% of patients with this condition seek medical advice.
Secondary hyperhidrosis occurs due to another medical condition or side effect to a medication, and the sweating occurs on larger more generalized areas of the body. Some medical conditions that may cause secondary hyperhidrosis are: cancer, heart disease, hyperthyroidism, menopause, and infections.
Treatment Options for Hyperhidrosis
Treatments for hyperhidrosis may include:
- Antiperspirants containing higher doses of aluminum chloride
- Prescription medications that help to prevent the stimulation of the sweat glands
For some people none of the therapies listed above may be appropriate, effective, and/or well tolerated.
Compounding Medications for Hyperhidrosis
Vic’s Family Pharmacy has the ability to compound several topical formulations of medications that are made specifically based on your unique needs. Topical medication administration has been used for decades, and some potential advantages of utilizing topical medications include:
- Achievement of efficacy with a lower dose
- Site specific drug delivery
- Improved patient compliance and adherence
- Avoidance of risks and side effects associated with oral administration
Is a Compounded Prescription for Hyperhidrosis Right for Me?
- Talk to your health care provider - Discuss compounding topical medications as a treatment option, and let your health care provider know you heard about prescription compounding from Vic’s Family Pharmacy.
- Contact Us - To inquire about potential treatment strategies, and how Vic’s Family Pharmacy can help you.