Two types of surgical methods can be used to treat underarm sweating- namely ETS or endoscopic thoracic sympathectomy, or localised surgery aimed at destroying the underarm sweatglands. Localised surgery such as excision, cautery and lipsuction is rarely performed due to the high rates of scarring and potential complications. Endoscopic Thoracic Sympathectomy can be an excellent surgical method of treating excessive sweating, especially if sweating involves the underarms and hands. This procedure is conducted in hospital by a specialist Vascular surgeon.

Facts on surgery for axillary or underarm sweating

  • Surgery for underarm sweating can be effective
  • The most successful form of surgery is known as ETS surgery
  • ETS disrupts the nerves that stimulates the sweat glands
  • ETS has a very high success rate and is most useful if patients have associated palmar (hand) hyperhidrosis
  • Localised destruction of sweat glands such as excision, liposuction and curretage is rarely performed
  • Surgery for excessive sweating can be considered as last line management

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