Why have I been referred for this treatment?
Your consultant has diagnosed you with hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating) and referred you to us for Botox injections. Please read this leaflet before coming into hospital for your Botox injections.
When you arrive at the dermatology department at Brighton General Hospital you will need to check in at the reception, then a member of the nursing staff will ask a few questions to ensure your treatment is appropriate. Please feel free to ask any relevant questions.
You will not be able to have Botox injections if you are pregnant, considering becoming pregnant, breast feeding, suffer, or have been diagnosed with any muscular or heart problems. This will also apply if you are taking certain antibiotics or use any drugs as muscle relaxants, or if you have any bleeding disorder or taking anticoagulant drugs. Please contact us on 01273 665030 as soon as possible to postpone or cancel your treatment.
What is axillary (armpits) hyperhidrosis?
Your sweat glands work when you get a message from the body’s nervous system, if they get too many messages they keep on working and you can sweat excessively. This is called hyperhidrosis; if this happens under your arms it is called axillary hyperhidrosis.
Do I need to do anything before coming for the injections?
Please do not shave under your arms or use deodorant during the 24 hours prior to your appointment time. Please wear dark / black clothing as iodine solution is painted onto the skin, which will stain for a few days.
How are the injections given?
The treatment involves an iodine solution and starch powder being applied to your armpits in order for us to identify the areas that you sweat. This will be followed by a series of small injections into the skin. The needles are very fine and the amount injected each time is tiny. Although there is some stinging the whole procedure takes approximately twenty minutes and is not too uncomfortable.
Will I need to take extra care after the treatment?
You can resume normal activity immediately after the treatment but please refrain from using deodorant for at least 2/3 days.
How does Botox work?
Botulinum Toxin, otherwise known as ‘Botox’ is a treatment given by injection into the skin. It is a preparation of protein and when small doses are injected into the skin, it blocks the signals from the nervous system that supply the sweat glands; this stops them working so hard and prevents them from producing so much sweat.
How long will the Botox work for?
Botox is not a permanent cure and some people may get greater benefit than others. In hyperhidrosis Botox helps to stop or greatly reduce the symptoms. This will usually happen within two weeks of treatment and the effects may last between six and seven months. If you find that this treatment has helped you, it can be repeated, this will give you the greatest benefit. (Under the NHS you will be allowed two treatments of Botox after which you will have to seek any further treatment in the private sector).
What are the possible side effects?
Most common side effects are: sweating in sites other than armpits, swelling, stinging and pain in the injection site, headache and hot flushes.
Less common: nausea, itching, temporary muscle pain and weakness, joint stiffness, pain in armpits.
Support groups and further information
There is a support group on the internet for Hyperhidrosis which gives information regarding alternative treatments or if you require any other information at:
You can read a patient information leaflet that comes with Botox online at:
You can get a free version in large print, Braille or an audio CD from the RNIB Telephone: 0800 198 5000 quote product license number PL 00426:0074.
Patient advice and liaison service (PALS)
We recognise that coming to hospital can sometimes be difficult and we are here to help, should you need it.
If you have any issues or concerns about your care it is always best to speak initially to the person in charge of the ward or department. If you’re not happy with their response, please do get in touch with PALS.
The information in this leaflet is for guidance purposes only and is in no way intended to replace professional clinical advice by a qualified practitioner.