Another use for Botox – it stops you sweating

Noticed that the person next to you is not sweating? Perhaps they have poison in their armpits.

Excessive perspirers are having their sweat glands turned off with injections of Botox, according to a cosmetic surgery company, The Harley Medical Group. It says the number of patients receiving the "sweatox" injections has trebled in the past three months and now makes up 31 per cent of its treatments involving Botox, more commonly used to smooth wrinkles.

Botulinum toxin, to give it its scientific name, can block the nerve endings of sweat glands in the arms, chest, hands and feet. The company says the treatment dries out those who suffer from the condition hyperhidrosis, as well as those who sweat profusely on first dates or "wish to appear cool at work". It costs £550 a time and lasts for six months.

Use of Botox to ease nerve-racking moments may lead to claims that cosmetic surgeons are offering medical treatments as casual lifestyle choices.

During the summer, bus and train commuters experience stifling heat, with passengers on the London Underground, for instance, having to put up with temperatures over 37C.

Patches of perspiration are considered unsightly. In one infamous case, Tony Blair drenched his shirt during the 2001 Labour Party conference. His aides had earlier boasted that his drenched blue shirts showed he worked hard. Mr Blair's spokesman last year denied that the former premier had sought treatment for the condition.

"Whilst normal sweating regulates body temperature, excessive sweating can be chronically embarrassing," said Nicky Naylor, the Harley Medical Group's Botox specialist. "Sufferers can start avoiding social situations.

"But it's not just those with a severe problem. My patients include those whose nervousness when presenting gets them sweating severely in front of hundreds of people, and shy men and women who break out in a sweat in nerve-racking social situations.

"Many patients feel that not having to worry about getting uncomfortably sweaty is a big boost to their confidence, especially during summer." The group said it had performed 55 per cent more Botox procedures – its second most-requested non-surgical procedure after laser hair removal – than last year.

A hyperhydrosis sufferer, Sara Jones, whose words were conveyed by the company, said: "Before I tried Botox, my body, hands and feet felt clammy with sweat most of the time. Shaking hands with new people was a trial, I always had to explain my sweaty hands. The Botox treatments have been effective."

Other treatments include oral tablets such as Robinul; a procedure called iontophoresis, which involves pails of water and electrodes, and surgery which requires "clipping" or burning of nerves.

The BBC television reporter James Pearce is one sufferer: he divulged yesterday that he had been sweating so much while covering the Olympics that he had retreated indoors to broadcast. In his blog from Beijing, he mused: "Maybe I don't have the right deodorant, but the problem is more fundamental. I would challenge anybody to go outside in this humidity and not perspire.

"I do feel obliged to have some sensitivity for the TV viewers. The last thing anybody wants to see on television is a reporter drowning in his own sweat."

How does Sweatox work?

* Botulinum toxin is a poison but can be used in tiny quantities cosmetically. Botox is a brand name for it.

* A surgeon injects Botox into a sweaty area, such as an armpit or palm.

* Small amounts of the poison block the action of nerves in the sweat glands.

* The area becomes dry after about a week and remains without perspiration for months.

* Sweat slowly returns as nerve endings grow back in six to 12 weeks.

* A new treatment is usually required after seven months.

Source: Harley Medical Group

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Recruitment Genius: Senior .Net Programmer

    £25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Bridgend based software de...

    Recruitment Genius: Digital Printer

    £21000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A specialist retail and brand c...

    Recruitment Genius: Digital Designer

    £25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This digital production agency ...

    Recruitment Genius: Class 2 HGV Driver - with CPC

    £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Haulage company based on the Thorpe Indu...

    Day In a Page

    Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

    Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

    How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
    Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

    Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

    Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
    Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

    Aviation history is littered with grand failures

    But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
    Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

    Fortress Europe?

    Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
    Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

    Never mind what you're wearing

    It's what you're reclining on that matters
    General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

    Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

    The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
    Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

    Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

    Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
    Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

    Marginal Streets project documents voters

    Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
    Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

    The real-life kingdom of Westeros

    Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
    How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

    How to survive a Twitter mauling

    Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
    Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

    At dawn, the young remember the young

    A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
    Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

    Follow the money as never before

    Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
    Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

    Samuel West interview

    The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
    General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

    Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

    Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
    Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

    Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

    The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence