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Treatment For Sweaty Palms, Singapore Experience

Khoo Ai Ling is a happy, healthy 25-year old media executive. In the past, there was one thing that bothered and sometimes embarrassed her - that was having to shake someone’s hand. At times you would be able to see dripping beads of sweat on her palms.

For the last two years, Ai Ling had wanted to do something about her sweaty palms. In May this year, Ai Ling decided to have her condition treated. She went to see Dr Lee Kheng Hin, a consultant neurosurgeon at Gleneagles Medical Centre. Dr Lee had already earned himself a reputation for doing a minimally invasive operation to treat sweaty palms. The procedure, called video endoscopic sympathectomy, requires small cuts in the armpits so that an endoscope hooked up to a miniature video camera can be used. Ai Ling was impressed because getting rid of sweaty palms would not mean getting a massive scar.

Dr Lee had been approached by a company to design an endoscope specially for the treatment of sweaty palms. Ai Ling became Dr Lee’s first patient to have the procedure performed with a new sympathectoscope which can also be used to treat sweaty armpits and body odour.

The new sympathectoscope only gives a half centimetre scar in the armpit. Unlike the standard needlescopes which have relatively poor vision and a soft wire coagulator which makes it more difficult to stop unexpected bleeding, the sympathectoscope gives exceptional vision and has a rigid burning apparatus, both of which make the procedure safer. The sympathectoscope will be marketed by German company Zeppelin Instruments.


Two patients were recently treated by neurosurgeon Dr Lee Kheng Hin at Gleneagles Hospital for their sweaty palms, using endoscopic surgery. Both patients, in their early forties, had been tolerating the inconvenience of wet and clammy hands for years.

Until recently, treatments available were confined to topical medications and electrophoresis, both of which only offered temporary relief. Some patients did not react well to the topical medications and others suffered sore, dry throats from electrophoresis. These side-effects and necessity for repeated treatment often resulted in patients not completing therapy.

Another option that offered a permanent cure was conventional surgery, but this was a major procedure requiring an average hospital stay of seven days with a period in the intensive care unit. Post-operative pain was severe and the operation left long, unsightly scars.

The new minimally invasive video endoscopic technique however, addresses these difficulties. It involves a less than one centimetre incision in the armpit to destroy the T2 sympathetic chain and ganglion. The operation takes about five minutes per side. Dr Lee has performed a total of 237 procedures, one of the largest personal experiences in the region. This technique can also be used for sweaty armpits and faces. Post-operative pain is almost non-existent, the scars are not noticeable and hospitalisation is reduced to only one day without the need for intensive care.

Case 1

In July last year, Mr C H Ng consulted Dr Lee for relief from his sweaty palms. He had heard about the new technique at a talk. As a businessman, a large part of his job involved meeting clients. His sweaty palms made this very uncomfortable and he had been trying to get rid of the problem for some time. Topical drugs and electrophoresis had failed to permanently cure his condition.

After undergoing the minimally invasive procedure, Mr Ng said: “I’m so glad my problem has been eliminated. I feel more confident now.”

Case 2

Madam Chium learnt of the procedure a year ago from the newspapers. But it was only after seeing someone on television who benefited from the treatment that she decided to give it a try.

Now free from sweaty palms, she said: “Friends discouraged me from seeking treatment. To them my problem was not serious enough for surgery”. Now after surgery, she is very pleased with the result. A lifetime of inconvenience has been eradicated with this simple and relatively inexpensive technique.


Sweaty palms is an inconvenience being tolerated by many people. Before, treatments were confined to topical medications and electrophoresis, both of which offered temporary relief. Some patients did not react well to the topical medications, while others suffered sore and dry throats from the electrophoresis treatment. Such side-effects and the necessity to repeat treatment often resulted in patients not completing therapy.

Another option that was available was conventional surgery. This offered a permanent cure but because it is a major procedure, it required an average hospital stay of 7 days with a period in the intensive care unit. Many patients do not favour this option as there was severe post-operative pain and long and unsightly scars remained after the operation.

Now a new technique is available and it is known as Video Endoscopic Sympathectomy. This new minimally invasive video endoscopic technique involves a less than one centimetre incision in the armpit to destroy the T2 sympathetic chain and ganglion. The actual sympathectomy takes about five minutes per side and the whole procedure takes approximately one hour. Post-operative pain is almost non-existent and the scars are not noticeable. Hospitalisation is reduced to only one day without any need for intensive care. This technique can also be used for sweaty armpits and faces.

The first case done using this technique at our Operating Theatre was performed by Dr Lee Kheng Hin, Consultant Neurosurgeon on the patient, Ms Kong Huey Minn on 8 January 1997. Ms Kong had been tolerating this inconvenience for 24 years as topical drugs had failed to permanently cure her condition. After undergoing the minimally invasive procedure, Ms Kong remarked “I am glad this is over and I feel happier now”.

Since then, quite a number of cases were done using this technique by consultant neurosurgeons at the hospital.



Jackie said...

What percentage of patients suffer from compensatory sweating after the procedure?

I hear this is quite a common problem.

Anonymous said...

I am working in a software concern, always my palm is sweaty in nature. So it is difficult to use the mouse. So I need a treatment to overcome this problem. Now I am going to take sweaty palms treatment from Dr. Rivkin. I expect that day

Jackie said...

Hyperhidrosis is a fairly common disorder shared by millions across the world. By definition, Hyperhidrosis is the excessive sweating of the head, face, hands, feet and armpits no matter the temperature or conditions.

The sweating is erratic, unpredictable and uncontrollable. You do have some options.

To stop the excessive sweating try:

1. Drysol

Drysol is a prescription deodorant that works wonders for underarm, hand and foot sweating. Apply it to your hands, feet, armpits or anywhere else you sweat at night before bed. You only need to apply it once a day - it's not like regular deodorant. This stuff is Clinical Strength. Beware of irritation with Drysol. You may have to take a day or two off from this treatment if your skin gets too dry, sensative or red with a rash.

2. Drink more water to lower your body temperature.

A lot of people are confused by this solution. They think if they drink more water, it will give them that much more fluid to sweat out. This is totally incorrect. Drinking more water cools your core temperature and will alleviate some of the excessive sweating. Of course now you'll need to worry about all those bathroom breaks. :)

3. Drink Green Tea or Sage Tea at night

Tea contains an astringent property which will dry out oils and prevent excess moister from escaping the skin. It essentially drys you from the inside out.

In addition to helping your complexion, green tea will neutralize many of the toxins that create the pungent odor in sweat. By the way, that odor is caused by bacteria that treats your sweat as a breeding ground. Gross!

4. Try Certain Dri (non-prescription deodorant)

You can buy this one at most pharmacies. Certain dry is a little less abrasive than Drysol so you won't need to worry as much about irritation. It is however a little less strong. You'll want to gauge your level of Hyperhidrosis by first trying Certain Dri. If your sweating continues, upgrade to Drysol and that should do the trick.

5. Avoid spicy foods, alcohol and caffeine

Don't underestimate the power of your diet. Onions, Garlic, Curry, Coffee and a whole host of other ingredients are powerful triggers for hyperhidrosis sweating. Cut out some of these cultprits and see gradual but noticeable results. Add leafy greens and tea into your diet for a positive effect on sweating. Changing your diet will really cut out the spontaneous sweating from your daily lunch breaks.

6. Try Iontophoresis treatments.

This is more of a phase 3 solution. Try the clinical deodorants and diet fixes first. However, there is a treatment called Iontophoresis where you place your hands and feet into bowls or plates. The plates are filled with mineral water. Connected to the plates is an Iontophoresis electromagnetic device. Gentle electic pulses are distributed through mineral water. The minerals bond and temporarily change the nature of your sweat pores to block the sweat. This treatment works well. You can learn about it through the Source link I've provided below.

7. Try a Sage Tea Soak

There's something called a Sage Tea solution what you do is...
a. Buy Sage Tea from your supermarket
b. Fill a large bowl with room temperature water
c. Put the sage tea bags in the bowl and let the tea dissolve a bit.
d. soak your hands for 15 minutes in the bowl.

Sage Tea will act as an astringent to dry the skin and prevent excessive sweating for many days to follow.

Don't just do this soak one day. Do it everyday for 5 days straight (15 minutes at a time) and you'll see great results.

If your hands tan from the tea, just wash them in the sink with antibacterial soap. The residue will come off easily.

8. ETS (Endoscopic Thorasic Surgery)

If the sweating is bad enough, some people will opt towards ETS (Endoscopic Thorasic Surgery). This is, however, a LAST resort. I recommend you try everything else possible before opting towards surgery. You can speak with your Dermatologist to find out more.


dancilhoney said...

Oh my gosh!!! I'm not all sweaty and I just got back from a three mile bike ride!

Stop Sweating

Mahbub Alam said...

Any body can tell me where i can get Drysol in Singapore?

Mahbub Alam said...

Any body can tell me where i can get Drysol in Singapore?

Lenin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
L Yxx said...

Drysol not in SG. Go DRICLOR

jaspreet singh said...

Singapore is really growing a good place for medical treatment there are some good centers and doctors which serving in Singapore.

hand surgeons Singapore

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