Anhidrosis Complications

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Heat-related illnesses are the most serious complications of anhidrosis. Children are especially vulnerable because their core temperatures rise faster than adults’, and their bodies release heat less efficiently.

Heat-related problems include:

  • Heat cramps. Symptoms include muscle pain or spasms. Rest in a cool place and drink water or a sports drink. Get medical help if cramps last longer than an hour.
  • Heat exhaustion. Signs and symptoms include weakness, nausea and a rapid pulse. Move to a cool place and get medical help if symptoms last longer than an hour.
  • Heatstroke. This life-threatening condition occurs when your body temperature reaches 103 F (39.5 C) or higher. Skin may be hot, red or dry. If not treated immediately, heatstroke can cause loss of consciousness.
  • Causes of anhidrosis include:
    • Conditions you’re born with, such as certain congenital dysplasias that affect the development of sweat glands
    • Inherited conditions that affect your metabolic system, such as Fabry’s disease
    • Connective tissue diseases, such as Sjogren’s syndrome, which causes dry eyes and mouth
    • Skin damage, such as from burns or radiation therapy, or diseases that clog your pores (poral occlusion), such as psoriasis
    • Conditions that cause nerve damage (neuropathy), such as diabetes, alcoholism and Guillain-Barre syndrome
    • Certain drugs, such as morphine and botulinum toxin type A, and those used to treat psychosis

Prevention

Anhidrosis often can’t be prevented, but serious heat-related illnesses can. To stay safe:

  • Wear loose, light clothing when it’s warm.
  • Stay cool indoors on hot days.
  • Use a spray bottle containing water to cool yourself.
  • Monitor your activity level closely so you don’t overdo it.
  • Learn the signs of heat-related illness and how to treat them.

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