Scientific publications

Prospective study of percutaneous radiofrequency sympathicolysis in severe hyperhidrosis and facial blushing: efficacy and safety findings

Garcia Franco CE, Guillen-Grima F, España A.
General Thoracic Surgery Department, Hospital Universitario Nuestra Señora de Candelaria, Tenerife, Spain

Magazine: European Journal of Cardio-thoracic Surgery

Date: Jun 15, 2011

Dermatology Preventive Medicine [SP]

Hyperhidrosis (Hh) and facial blushing (Fb) are conditions caused by hyperactivity of the sympathetic system; they affect around 2% of the population. Severe cases have been typically treated with thoracic sympathectomy through a minimally invasive approach. We sought to determine if severe Hh and/or Fb patients, who are reluctant to go through an operation with general anaesthesia, could benefit from receiving percutaneous radiofrequency ablation of the sympathetic chain.

Prospectively collected data obtained from May 2007 to May 2010 were analysed to compare the treatment efficacy and effects on quality of life of the two procedures.

From a total of 58 patients enrolled in the study, 31 were treated with radiofrequency procedures, whereas 27 received surgical sympathectomy. Patients with Hh had better results with surgery than with radiofrequency sympathicolysis in terms of efficacy (p=0.0001) and quality of life (p=0.0002). However, there was still a significant improvement in quality of life in the group of patients treated with radiofrequency sympathicolysis (p=0.004). Patients with Fb had good results with surgical procedures and poor outcomes with radiofrequency ablation, resulting in significant differences in treatment efficacy (p=0.005) and in quality of life (p=0.003). Fb patients treated with radiofrequency procedures had no improvement in quality of life after the intervention (p=0.28).

Our results support the view of surgical sympathectomy as the gold-standard treatment in severe cases of Hh and Fb. Radiofrequency sympathicolysis is useful as a second-treatment choice for Hh patients. Fb patients do not benefit from radiofrequency sympathicolysis.

CITATION  Eur J Cardiothorac Surg. 2011 Jun 15

you maybe interested


The Clínica is the greater private hospital with technological equipment of Spain, all in a single center.

Imagen de un PET, tecnología de vanguardia en la Clínica Universidad de Navarra


The professionals of the Clínica perform continuous research and training, always to the benefit of the patient.

Imagen profesionales de la Clínica Universidad de Navarra


Learn why we are different from other healthcare centers. Quality, speed, comfort and results.

Imagen del edificio de la Clínica Universidad de Navarra