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photo of a sweaty hand

Iontophoresis

Iontophoresis is a quick, painless and non-invasive treatment for controlling excessive sweating in hands and feet (palmar/plantar hyperhidrosis).

The treatment system delivers a mild electrical current via a water bath, in which the patient places their hands or feet.

Iontophoresis is not a permanent solution to hyperhidrosis, therefore ongoing treatment will be required. The exact mechanism of action for this treatment is unknown, however it is thought that the electrical current interrupts the signals between sweat-inducing nerves and sweat glands, thereby stopping the stimulation of the glands.

After consultation with one of our doctors, you will be booked in for treatment. The appointment will last approximately 20 minutes. You will immerse your hands or feet in the water bath, and one of our dermal therapists will run a mild electrical current through the bath. Electrical shocks are uncommon and able to be avoided, therefore there should be no discomfort felt during the treatment.

Iontophoresis is not a permanent solution, therefore maintenance treatments are necessary. Generally, we recommend patients undergo 10 sessions initially over a period of 4 weeks (3 sessions per week for the first two weeks, 2 sessions per week thereafter) until the sweating is under control. Maintenance sessions are subsequently recommended every week or fortnight to maintain results, depending on the severity of the condition. The patient may wish to purchase their own machine at this time to conduct treatments at home.

There is no downtime following the procedure. As with any procedure, there are some side effects that may be associated with the treatment, which are both expected and transient. These side effects are mild tingling or burning during treatment, and short-term skin irritation (reddening) after treatment.
Iontophoresis was first introduced in 1952, and has proved to be a safe and effective treatment for palmoplantar hyperhidrosis.

Most patients report a moderate to complete reduction in their sweat. This is usually achieved after 10 treatment sessions. Ongoing maintenance sessions are required in order to maintain results. As with any medical procedure, results will vary by person. After an initial course of treatments in-clinic to establish the correct individual regime, many patients go on to home-treatments with their own machine for maintenance.

 

 

The results after iontophoresis treatments are temporary. Once treatments are ceased, the sweating will eventually resume to levels that were present prior to treatments. In one clinical study, patients were followed up at six weeks post-course of treatments. It was reported that the subjects’ hyperhidrosis had returned, however the severity had not yet returned to that of pre-treatment levels. After an initial course of treatments in-clinic to establish the correct individual regime, many patients go on to home-treatments with their own machine for maintenance.
If sweaty palms or soles are interfering with your daily life, then you may be a good candidate for iontophoresis. This procedure is only suitable for treatment of excessive sweating of the hands or feet. It cannot be used on other areas of the body. Results are not permanent and ongoing maintenance treatments are usually needed.

How much do the Iontophoresis treatments cost?

You can pay for your treatment with cash, EFTPOS, Visa, Mastercard, American Express (merchant fees apply) or zipPay.

Initial Consultation with Doctor (Medicare rebate may apply)$100
Set of 10 Iontophoresis treatments (hands OR feet)$350
Set of 10 Iontophoresis treatments (hands AND feet)$525
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References

Akbar, T. M., Saqib, M. A., Fahim, S., Nasir, M., & Nabi, H. (2013). Efficacy and Safety of Tap Water Iontophoresis for Palmoplantar Hyperhidrosis. Journal of Pakistan Association of Dermatologists, 23(3), 304-09.
Lakraj, A.-A. D., Moghimi, N., & Jabbari, a. B. (2013, April). Hyperhidrosis: Anatomy, Pathophysiology and Treatment with Emphasis on the Role of Botulinum Toxins. Toxins (Basel), 5(4), 821-40.
Siah, T. W., & Hampton, P. J. (2013). The Effectiveness of Tap Water Iontophoresis for Palmoplantar Hyperhidrosis Using a Monday, Wednesday, and Friday Treatment Regime. Dermatology Online Journal, 19(3), 14.