Hyperhidrosis of the Feet

Hyperhidrosis of the feet, also termed plantar hyperhidrosis, is characterized by excessive sweating of the feet that can be onset by any cause, such as exercise, fever, or anxiety. Most people suffering from hyperhidrosis of the feet also experience hyperhidrosis of the hands, or palmar hyperhidrosis. Approximately 1-2% of Americans suffer from this disorder.

Sweating is a healthy process utilized by the body in order to cool itself and maintain a proper internal temperature, which is controlled by the sympathetic nervous system. In individuals with hyperhidrosis, the sympathetic nervous system works in "overdrive", producing far more sweat than is actually needed.

Plantar hyperhidrosis is considered primary hyperhidrosis. Secondary hyperhidrosis refers to excessive sweating that occurs in an area other than the feet, hands, or armpits, and this indicates that is related to another medical condition, such as menopause, hyperthyroidism, or Parkinson's disease.

Symptoms of hyperhidrosis of the feet can include foot odor, athlete's foot, infections, and blisters. Because of the continual moisture, shoes and socks can rot which creates an additional foul odor and can ruin the material, requiring shoes and socks to be replaced frequently. In addition to the physical symptoms, emotional health is often affected as this disorder can be very embarrassing.

If left untreated, hyperhidrosis will usually persist throughout an individual's life. However, there are several treatment options available. A common first approach to treating hyperhidrosis of the feet is a topical ointment. Aluminum chloride, an ingredient found in antiperspirants, can be effective at treating hyperhidrosis if used in high concentration and applied to the foot daily. Some individuals can experience relief this way, while others encounter extreme irritation and are unable to use the product. Another procedure is the use of Botulinum Toxin A, commonly referred to as Botox. This is injected directly into the foot, and is effective at minimizing the sweat glands in the injected area. These injections must be repeated every 4 to 9 months.

If these treatments are ineffective, oral prescription medications may be taken in an effort to alleviate the symptoms. Again, some will experience relief while others do not. Going barefoot reportedly provides relief for most sufferers.

A final approach to combating hyperhidrosis of the feet is through surgery. Surgery has been less successful on patients with plantar hyperhidrosis than on those with palmar hyperhidrosis. It is only recommended when sweating is severe and other treatments have failed to work. This kind of surgery usually involves going into the central nervous system, and cutting nerves to stop the transmission of signals telling the foot to sweat.

You Might Also Enjoy...

Everyday Foot Care Preparation for the Fall Season

While the summer months were great for keeping the feet free in open air, it is necessary to take the appropriate measures to prep feet and give them that everyday foot care for the fall season. Before shoving your feet into a pair of boots this season, ma

The Most Common Foot Ailments for the Summer

Foot problems tend to be more prevalent during the summer, and certain conditions pop up more than others. The most common foot problems for the summer are heel pain, corns, calluses, and blisters. Heel pain is usually the result of an inflamed plantar fas

YOU CAN GET RID OF HERPES?!

Susan has been finding it hard to find a great guy. Now that she finally met one that seems like a man she could get involved with she has to tell him she has Herpes. She already knows that if she doesn’t tell him right away and he finds out later he might

Five Tips for Daily Foot Care

With the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, busy lifestyles may give way to sore and achy feet. To keep feet happy during the holidays, the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons (ACFAS) offers five tips. Avoid wearing narrow-fitting, overly-hig

All About Plantar Warts

Plantar warts are warts that are only found on the feet, hence the term “plantar”, which means “relating to the foot.” They are caused by the human papillomavirus, or HPV, and occur when this virus gets into open wounds on the feet. The warts themselves ar

Easily relieve Swollen Feet in Pregnant Women

Pregnant women living with swollen feet should not worry over having difficulty easing their condition, as there are various treatments available that are easily accessible and will help reduce swelling. One of the main causes of swollen feet in pregnant w