Neurological Health Data Verified

Hyperhidrosis - Types, Symptoms Causes, Diagnosis, and Treatment

Published on Apr 07, 2020   -  5 min read


The condition that results in excessive sweating in the absence of any trigger is called hyperhidrosis. Learn about its causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment options.

Hyperhidrosis - Types, Symptoms Causes, Diagnosis, and Treatment

What Is Hyperhidrosis?

Hyperhidrosis is when a person sweats excessively, irrespective of the climate or physical exertion. The person can sweat when the weather is cold or without any trigger, or sometimes due to menopause or thyroid problems. Such people sweat so much that their clothes might get soaked and sweat starts dripping from their hands and feet. This can cause embarrassment and social anxiety and hinders in normal day to day activities. For a few individuals, the symptoms are so severe that it makes them anxious. It affects the patient’s career choices, activities, relationships, self-esteem, and emotional health.

Treatment is usually done with strong antiperspirants, and if that does not help, the doctor might suggest various medications or therapies. In extreme cases, the person might need surgery to get the sweat glands removed or to cut the nerves that are responsible for excessive sweating.

Hyperhidrosis disorder is a condition that results in excessive sweating. Most people do not consult a doctor for excess sweating as they thing it is not a condition that can be treated.

What Are the Types of Hyperhidrosis?

Sweating caused due to hyperhidrosis occurs mostly in the hands, feet, groin, and armpits, as these parts contain the most concentration of sweat glands. The types are:

  1. Focal hyperhidrosis - This is when excessive sweating is localized in a particular body part. For example, sweating in the palms and soles (palmoplantar hyperhidrosis).

  2. Generalized hyperhidrosis - This is the type where the entire body is affected.

This condition can be present at birth, or it can develop later on. Most people start experiencing the symptoms during their teenage. This condition can also be classified based on the cause:

  1. Primary idiopathic hyperhidrosis - the cause is unknown. Most of the cases are of this type.

  2. Secondary hyperhidrosis - sweating is due to an underlying health condition like obesity, menopause, gout, mercury poisoning, hyperthyroidism, diabetes, etc.

What Are the Symptoms Experienced by a Person with Hyperhidrosis?

The signs of hyperhidrosis include:

  1. Wet and clammy palms (underside of the hand).

  2. Wet and clammy soles (underside of the feet).

  3. Profuse sweating.

  4. Wet and soaked clothing.

The person might also experience the following symptoms:

What Are the Causes of Hyperhidrosis?

Depending on the type, the causes of hyperhidrosis are:

Primary Hyperhidrosis - It was believed that primary hyperhidrosis was due to the person’s emotional state. Stress, anxiety, etc., were believed to trigger this. But, recent studies showed that people with this type of hyperhidrosis are anxious and stressed because of excessive sweating and not the other way round. It also showed that genetics plays a role and that this condition could be inherited.

Here, the nervous system triggers the sweat glands and makes them overactive, and make them secrete sweat even without the rise in body temperature. The condition worsens with stress and nervousness.

Secondary Hyperhidrosis -

Injury to the spinal cord.

How Does the Doctor Diagnose Hyperhidrosis?

Visit a doctor if you feel that you sweat a lot without any reason. On your visit, the doctor will ask you about the symptoms, your medical history, and some questions to understand what triggers such sweating episodes. If needed, the doctor will then suggest you go for further testing:

  1. Blood and urine tests - to rule out all other medical conditions that can result in similar symptoms, such as hyperthyroidism.

  2. Thermoregulatory sweat test - Here, a moisture-sensitive powder is applied to your skin, and when you sweat, the color of the powder changes.

People’s palms and soles, who do not have hyperhidrosis, do not sweat when exposed to heat. But hyperhidrosis patients do. Other tests, such as the iodine-starch test and skin conductance test are also used.

What Are the Treatment Options for Hyperhidrosis?

The treatment options include:

1) Home Remedies:

2) Medications:

3) Other Procedures and Surgery:

Microwave therapy - Here, a device is used to destroy sweat glands with the help of microwave energy.

For more information on hyperhidrosis, consult a doctor online now.


This is a sponsored Ad. icliniq or icliniq doctors do not endorse the content in the Ad.

Article Resources

Last reviewed at:
07 Apr 2020  -  5 min read




Comprehensive Medical Second Opinion.Submit your Case

Related Questions & Answers

Can my symptoms be related to multiple sclerosis?

Query: Hi doctor, I had an MRI with a possible indication of MS. I want to know based on the following symptoms, what type of MS it could be? A few weeks back, I had blurry vision in one eye for 20 to 30 seconds. My bladder wall is thick, and I had frequent urination problem. I consulted a urologist, and...  Read Full »

Excessive Sweating and Its Remedies (Hyperhidrosis)

Article Overview: This article focuses on the causes and management of excessive sweating localized to certain areas of body. Read Article

Dr. Suvash Sahu
Dr. Suvash Sahu

What Is Excessive Sweating or Hyperhidrosis? Hyperhidrosis or excessive sweating is one of the common disorders of sweat glands. It can trouble to the extent that one feels professional embarrassment while shaking hands. The individual usually avoids touching, which can lead to social seclusion or ...  Read Article

How is ringworm infection treated?

Query: Hello doctor, I had ringworm problem for the past three to four months. I used Abzorb - Clotrimazole powder and Betnovate GM cream. It did not stop, but increased spreading to other areas. Then I went to a doctor and he diagnosed it as tinea incognito. He prescribed Terbinafine 250, Levocetirizine ...  Read Full »

Popular Articles Most Popular Articles

Do you have a question on Anxiety or Sweating?

Ask a Doctor Online

* guaranteed answer within 4 hours.

Disclaimer: Alternative medicine is not aimed to replace the services of your treating physician or allopathy medicines. Our site’s information is to those who are willing to take responsibility for their health, being fully aware that the content published herein would not qualify as prescription or specific medical advice. If users use the information and stop prescribed medication without their physician’s consent, they bear full responsibility for their actions and iCliniq bears no responsibility for the same. Information on alternative medicine should not be misinterpreted as a cure for any illness, as our body is complex and everyone reacts differently.

Disclaimer: No content published on this website is intended to be a substitute for professional medical diagnosis, advice or treatment by a trained physician. Seek advice from your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with questions you may have regarding your symptoms and medical condition for a complete medical diagnosis. Do not delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice because of something you have read on this website.