If you suffer from hyperhidrosis due to excessive sympathetic nerve stimulation, you may hear about ETS surgery. This procedure uses a thin flexible tube with a camera at the tip that is inserted into a small incision under the armpit. This allows for superior visualization of the sympathetic nerve chain. Additionally, another small incision is made in order to place surgical instruments. 

Why ETS for hyperhidrosis?

ETS surgery is a surgical procedure that addresses the causes of excessive sweating. It can be performed in many different areas of the body, including the face and feet. While it has many benefits, ETS can also have some risks. This is why it is essential to do your research and find a qualified healthcare provider before undergoing the procedure.

Although the surgery is very expensive, the procedure can be covered by health insurance. However, you should check with your insurer before making a decision on the cost of the procedure. Typically, ETS costs anywhere from $5,000 to $10,000. Some insurance plans will require you to try less-invasive methods first before deciding to undergo this type of surgery.

During the process of deciding on whether to go ahead with ETS surgery, you should exhaust all non-surgical treatments. You may consider using clinical strength antiperspirants, iontophoresis, or anticholinergic medication. You can also consider Botox injections.

ETS surgery isn't suitable for all patients, but most sufferers are between the ages of 10 and 65. This surgery is not recommended for anyone with cardio-respiratory conditions, untreated thyroid disease, or excessive scarring on the chest. 

While ETS surgery can reduce the sweating in many parts of the body, the results are not 100%. There are many factors that can affect the outcome, including the type of surgery performed, anatomic differences in nerve function, and the surgeon's techniques. Despite these risks,  the procedure is performed in a minimally invasive area, so you can expect a quick recovery and less scarring than open surgery.

While the exact cause of primary hyperhidrosis is unknown, it is believed to be triggered by a malfunction in the autonomic nerve system. This dysfunction causes neurogenic overactivity of the sweat glands. ETS works by lowering the sympathetic tone in the nervous system, which regulates sweating. It also alters the heart rate and increases blood flow in the arteries.

ETS surgery for hyperhidrosis is an outpatient procedure and most patients can go home the day after the procedure. However, some patients may require a stay in the hospital for a few days after the surgery. The recovery time is generally one to two weeks.

Possible side effects

Before undergoing ETS surgery, patients should consider the possible side effects. These include compensatory sweating, Horner's syndrome, and gustatory sweating. Other possible complications include nerve pain, low heart rate, dry facial skin, and brachial plexus injury. Although this surgery is an effective way to treat hyperhidrosis, it is also highly invasive and can lead to serious complications. 

The surgery involves removing part of the main sympathetic trunk, a nerve that sends messages to many different organs, glands, and muscles. These messages travel to the brain and help adjust the body's functions to keep it in a "homeostastic" state. The main side effect of the surgery is a reduced ability to exercise and fatigue. 

Several percent of ETS patients report decreased heart rate. However, this side effect is usually not severe and has no effect on exercise tolerance or endurance. In fact, the Center for Hyperhidrosis' technique helps to prevent sympathetic innervation of the heart, which is a potential side effect of the procedure. This technique may be particularly beneficial for patients with certain heart arrhythmias.

Usually, patients return to normal activities within a week or two after ETS surgery. However, they must schedule a follow-up visit with their surgeon. In some cases, patients may experience bleeding, but this is rare and usually resolves on its own.

During the procedure, a small amount of air may remain in the chest cavity. This is normal and is reabsorbed within a few days. In rare cases, bleeding into the chest may occur, which may require a repeat thoracoscopic procedure to remove blood clots.

Although ETS is a relatively safe procedure, it requires pinpoint accuracy, which can result in some complications. Surgical risks can include pain, infection, and bleeding. 

Other treatments for Hyperhidrosis

While there is no cure for hyperhidrosis, there are several treatment options available to help control and even eliminate the condition. Some of these methods involve injecting glycopyrronium, a substance that inhibits nerve impulses that trigger sweating. Another type of treatment is iontophoresis, which involves placing the feet in water that has an electrical current. The charged particles in the water are believed to block secretions from the eccrine glands.

In severe cases, stronger antiperspirants may be used. These are applied to the affected area at night and washed off in the morning. These products can effectively reduce underarm sweating. Botulinum toxin injections are also used to treat excessive sweating. However, these are costly and can require multiple treatments.

There are several nonprescription medicines that can be used to control excessive sweating. These medicines block the sweat glands and reduce the amount of sweat that is produced. Astringents and tannic acid can also be used. In addition, regular bathing can help keep bacteria on the skin under control. Regardless of the treatment you choose, make sure to dry thoroughly after every bath.