Scognamillo, Fabrizio and Serventi, Fernando and Attene, Federico and Torre, Carlo and Paliogiannis, Panagiotis and Pala, Carlo and Trignano, Emilio and Trignano, Mario (2011) T2–T4 sympathectomy versus T3–T4 sympathicotomy for palmar and axillary hyperhidrosis. Clinical Autonomic Research , Vol. 21 (2), p. 97-102. ISSN 0959-9851. eISSN 1619-1560. Article.
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Objective To evaluate and compare the immediate and long-term outcomes of videothoracoscopic T2–T4 sympathectomy and T3–T4 sympathicotomy for the treatment of palmar and axillary hyperhidrosis.
Methods Between October 1993 and September 2007, we treated a total of 88 patients affected by palmar and axillary hyperhidrosis. Twenty-four patients underwent T2–T4 sympathectomy with 5–10 mm trocars (Group A), 43 T2–T4 sympathectomy with 2–5 mm trocars (Group B), 15 T3–T4 sympathicotomy with 5–10 mm trocars and 6 T3–T4 ganglion block with 2–5 mm trocars (Group C). The mean operative time, for each side, was 15 min for sympathicotomy and 28 min for sympathectomy. In September 2008, we recontacted 98% of patients (total 86), by telephone, to establish long-term results (follow-up range 1–15 years).
Results In this series, we did not find any significant difference between T2–T4 sympathectomy and T3–T4 sympathicotomy in terms of postsurgical palmar anhidrosis or onset of compensatory hyperhidrosis, while both methods show high efficacy for remission of palmar hyperhidrosis. The slightly higher recurrence rate in our early experience (Group A) can be attributed to the learning curve. Using smaller trocars (2–5 mm), we reduced postsurgical intercostal pain and obtained better aesthetic results and a higher grade of patient’s satisfaction.
Interpretation Thoracoscopic approach to hyperhidrosis has evolved in the last few decades with a consequent decrease in side effects. In this series, all patients experienced an improvement in quality of life even in case of recurrence or onset of compensatory hyperhidrosis. Due to these results, the shorter operative time and easier performance of sympathicotomy, we prefer this method.
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