Journal of Rehabilitation Research & Development (JRRD)

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Volume 52 Number 1, 2015
   Pages 31 — 40

Abstract — Incidence, severity, and impact of hyperhidrosis in people with lower-limb amputation

Colby Hansen, MD;1* Bradeigh Godfrey, DO;1–2 Jody Wixom, MD; 1,3 Molly McFadden, MS4

1Division of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, University of Utah School of Medicine, Salt Lake City, UT; 2George E. Wahlen Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center, VA Salt Lake City Health Care System, Salt Lake City, UT; 3Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Utah Valley Regional Medical Center, Provo, UT; 4Division of Epidemiology, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT

Abstract — To assess the incidence and severity of self-reported hyperhidrosis in patients with amputation and understand its effects on prosthetic fit or function, a cross-sectional survey of patients at two amputee clinics was performed. Responses from 121 subjects with lower-limb amputation were analyzed. Of these subjects, 66% reported sweating to a degree that it interfered with daily activities, as measured by the Hyperhidrosis Disease Severity Scale. There was a significant association between sweating and interference with prosthetic fit and function. Sweating was more severe in cases of transtibial amputations, patients under the age of 60 yr, warm weather, and vigorous activity. There was no relationship between severity of sweating and time since amputation, etiology of amputation, duration of daily prosthetic use, or reported ability to perform functional tasks. Subjects reported trying multiple interventions, but the self-reported effectiveness of these treatments was low. Hyperhidrosis, a common problem associated with prosthetic usage, varies in severity and often interferes with daily activities. Sweating severity is associated with poor prosthetic fit and function. Risk factors include younger age and transtibial amputation status. Treatment strategies generally lack efficacy. The results of this study may provide guidance for future interventions and treatment options.

Key words: amputation, amputee, artificial limb, cross-sectional survey, hyperhidrosis, prosthesis, rehabilitation, skin, survey, sweating.


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This article and any supplementary material should be cited as follows:
Hansen C, Godfrey B, Wixom J, McFadden M. Incidence, severity, and impact of hyperhidrosis in people with lower-limb amputation. J Rehabil Res Dev. 2015;52(1):31–40.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1682/JRRD.2014.04.0108
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