Health Tips

Say good-bye to ex­ces­sive un­der­arm sweat­ing with this quick out­pa­tient pro­ce­dure

RSWLiving - - Department­s - BY ROBERT BRUECK, M. D.

Avoid­ing a Com­mon Sum­mer Dis­as­ter

One of the most an­noy­ing and frus­trat­ing things about living in South­west Florida is deal­ing with warm hu­mid sum­mers and per­spi­ra­tion. Many peo­ple suf­fer from ex­ces­sive un­der­arm sweat­ing, which is known as ax­il­lary hy­per­hidro­sis. This con­di­tion is not only em­bar­rass­ing, but it’s a tremen­dous so­cial bur­den. First there are the ugly marks that heavy per­spi­ra­tion leaves on cloth­ing, and then when you laun­der your fa­vorite blouse or shirt, you re­al­ize that the stub­born stains do not come out. So count­less gar­ments are rel­e­gated to the garbage can and over years the cost of re­plac­ing them can take a toll on your bud­get.

Most of the time ex­ces­sive un­der­arm sweat­ing is clas­si­fied as pri­mary, i.e. no known cause. But that doesn’t mean there’s no known fix for the prob­lem. Many peo­ple have found miraDry ther­apy to be a suc­cess­ful so­lu­tion. The pro­ce­dure is done in a physi­cian’s of­fice as an out­pa­tient. MiraDry uses a mi­crowave tech­nol­ogy that de­stroys the sweat glands (eccrine) as well as the odor pro­duc­ing glands (apocrine). Only about 2 per­cent of our sweat glands are in our ax­il­lar, so the miraDry pro­ce­dure that treats the un­der­arm area will not af­fect the body’s abil­ity to reg­u­late its tem­per­a­ture.

The treat­ment takes about an hour to an hour and a half and is done with lo­cal anes­the­sia so the pa­tient can drive to and from the of­fice. Pa­tients are asked to shave their ax­il­laes about four to five days be­fore the planned treat­ment and wear a sleeve­less blouse or shirt the day of their treat­ment.

For re­lief af­ter the pro­ce­dure, post-op pa­tients can take over- the­counter drugs such as Motrin, or re­quest pre­scrip­tion painkiller­s. The key is to ice the un­der­arm area. Pa­tients are in­structed to fill small zip-lock bags with ice and keep ic­ing the area down. They are ad­vised to take it easy for the rest of the day; they can shower the next day. The down­side is a lit­tle sore­ness, and there may be some tin­gling in the arm, ob­vi­ously some swelling, which can be mod­er­ate if you don’t ice it enough.


Usu­ally only one treat­ment is re­quired, but about 5 to 10 per­cent of the pa­tients may need to do an ad­di­tional treat­ment. One of the things I love about miraDry is that it ac­tu­ally works. We have prob­a­bly done the pro­ce­dure on close to 50 pa­tients now, and they all are so re­lieved to be rid of the so­cially em­bar­rass­ing stigma of un­der­arm sweat­ing.

Judy Den­ni­son is among the pa­tients who had the miraDry treat­ment. “My sweat­ing un­der the arms was hor­ri­ble. If I wore a tank top out­side, there was al­ways a sweat stain.” Af­ter the first treat­ment she ex­pe­ri­enced no sweat­ing for the first month. She then had a sec­ond treat­ment, which re­duced her un­der­arm sweat­ing by 80 per­cent. “The area was sore and swollen for a few days, but noth­ing that Motrin didn’t help,” she says about her post-op ex­pe­ri­ence. “Ic­ing dur­ing the first 24 hours re­ally helped.”

Kristin Brant­ley, who per­spired ex­tremely heav­ily even in cooler weather, was not ap­pre­hen­sive at all about the miraDry ther­apy. “Know­ing that it’s not an in­va­sive pro­ce­dure and you are com­pletely numb when it’s done, just made me ex­cited for the end re­sult,” she says. For the first few days af­ter the pro­ce­dure she kept ice un­der her arms, which helped to al­le­vi­ate swelling and made it a bit more com­fort­able. Within a week she was com­pletely pain free, and the swelling was gone as was the ex­ces­sive per­spi­ra­tion. “I’m look­ing for­ward to hav­ing my sec­ond pro­ce­dure done, to be sweat free un­der my arms for good,” she says.

To learn more about miraDry ther­apy, ar­range a com­pli­men­tary con­sul­ta­tion at Dr. Robert Brueck’s of­fice in Fort My­ers, Cape Coral or Punta Gorda. Fi­nanc­ing is avail­able. So get ready for sum­mer and put an end to em­bar­rass­ing un­der­arm sweat­ing. For more in­for­ma­tion, con­tact 239-939-5233,

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