No sweating, anhidrosis: what is this, causes, symptoms, diagnostics, treatment, prevention

Synonyms: No sweating; Decreased sweating; Anhidrosis

Absence of sweating; Decreased sweating; Anhidrosis

What is anhidrosis

An abnormal lack of sweat when the body overheats can be harmful, because sweating allows the body to cool down. The medical term for lack of sweating is anhidrosis..

Anhidrosis sometimes goes unnoticed until then, until prolonged exposure to a hot place or intense physical activity no longer causes sweating.

A general lack of sweating can be life-threatening, as the body overheats. If the absence of sweating occurs only in a small area, it's usually not that dangerous.

Reasons for not sweating

Anhidrosis may be caused by:

  • Burns
  • Encephaloma
  • Certain genetic syndromes
  • Certain nerve problems (neuropathy)
  • Congenital diseases, including ectodermal dysplasia
  • strong dehydration
  • Nervous System Disorders, such as Guillain Barre syndrome
  • Skin diseases or scarring of the skin, blocking sweat glands
  • Sweat gland injury
  • Taking certain medications

Home care for anhidrosis

If there is a risk of overheating, take the following steps:

  • Take a cool shower or sit in a bath with cool water.
  • Drink plenty of fluids
  • Stay in a cool place
  • Move slow
  • DO NOT do heavy exercise

When to See a Doctor for Anhidrosis

Call your doctor, if you notice a frequent lack of sweating or abnormally low sweating during heat or strenuous exercise.

What will the doctor do when diagnosing the cause of anhidrosis

The doctor will conduct a physical examination. In an emergency, medical staff will take measures to quickly cool down and give you fluids to stabilize.

You may be asked about your symptoms and medical history.

You may be asked to wrap yourself in an electric blanket or sit in a steam room, while medical professionals monitor your body's response. Can also be assigned to other tests, to induce and measure perspiration.

Can be done skin biopsy. Genetic testing can be done if necessary.

Treatment depends on the cause of the lack of sweating.. You may be prescribed medication, causing sweating.

Used literature and sources

James WD, Elston DM, Treat JR, Rosenbach MA, Neuhaus IM. Diseases of the skin appendages. In: James WD, Elston DM, Treat JR, Rosenbach MA, Neuhaus IM, eds. Andrews’ Diseases of the Skin. 13th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2020:chap 33.

Miller JL. Diseases of the eccrine and apocrine sweat glands. In: Bolognia JL, Schaffer JV, Cerroni L, eds. Dermatology. 4th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2018:chap 39.

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