Good for the body, often bad for our self-image – sweating is a natural reaction to cool the body and regulate body temperature. It protects us from overheating when exercising, in hot weather or when we feel strong emotions such as fear or embarrassment. Unfortunately, such outbreaks of sweating are often accompanied by annoying side effects, including sweat patches under the arms and unpleasant odours. Many of those affected feel ashamed and uncomfortable.
Finally a relaxing day with no smell or wet patches on clothing – at the Klinik am Rhein in Düsseldorf, we have offered patients suction curettage of the sweat glands for some time. As a non-surgical alternative, we now also offer the clinically proven miraDry® treatment, a procedure that permanently reduces sweat production under the arms using microwaves.
No one likes to sweat. There are tips and tricks as well as household remedies to temporarily cope with the problem, but this is usually considered more trouble than it is worth. Who wants to sit in an office all day or attend events with unpleasant smells and visible sweat patches on their shirt or blouse? The only remedy here is regular washing or the use of deodorants, which usually contain poisonous substances such as aluminium chloride. The miraDry® treatment offers the luxury of sweat-free, beautiful underarms – permanent, reliable and no surgery. The treatment also results in reduced hair growth under the arms, as the hair roots are in the same layer of skin as the sweat glands.
While sweat is considered a flaw for many people purely for cosmetic reasons, some suffer from abnormal sweating, so-called hyperhydrosis. It manifests in excessive sweat production, regardless of the temperature or physical exertion. Areas most frequently affected are the palms of the hands, the soles of the feet, the forehead and particularly the underarms. Depending on the extent, special antiperspirants can provide temporary relief but do not usually treat excessive sweating in the sweat glands.
Methods to treat (axillary) hyperhydrosis that are effective include temporarily blocking the nerves responsible for sweat production using Botox injections as well as the permanent removal of the sweat glands by suctioning the sweat glands or the non-surgical microwave treatment with miraDry®.
The miraDry® procedure is clinically tested and is approved by the FDA, the American food and drug agency, which is known for its strict guidelines. The treatment is performed externally through the top layer of skin and begins with a mild local anaesthetic.
Using a special hand piece that is moved over the treatment area, microwave energy enters the tissue and is transformed into heat, which eliminates the sweat glands in the area. Furthermore, the hair follicles are destroyed in the process, which reduces the growth of hair under the arms. An additional cooling system in the miraDry® hand piece cools the top layer of skin to prevent it from becoming damaged. The treatment takes around 15-30 minutes per area. Afterwards, patients can return home or go back to work.
The heat generated during the procedure is not painful as the patient is given a local anaesthetic beforehand. The tissue is also cooled from the outside, both for the benefit of the patient and to protect the top layers of skin from damage.
After one session, the results can be seen immediately, sweat production in the treated area is significantly reduced or even completely stopped. Unlike conservative methods, the result is permanent. Since the sweat glands are eliminated during the microwave treatment and are then broken down by the body, they cannot grow back. Use on the underarms has no negative impact on the body’s ability to regulate temperature, only 2.3% of the sweat glands are found under the arms. Therefore, there is no risk of excessive sweating in other areas of the body after the treatment.
Since the procedure is performed without any incisions and therefore does not involve long recovery and healing times, it is considered very gentle for the body. Therefore, the risk of side effects is very low. Swelling or bruising in the first days or weeks may occur in some cases. In very rare cases, there may be temporary hyperpigmentation of the skin in the treated area. After the treatment, a slight burning sensation, similar to sunburn, may occur for a few days after the treatment. This can be regulated by occasional cooling.