I got 200 Botox shots today, but not the fun kind

Yes, that’s right. I got 200 shots of Botox today… in my feet.

Last week I also had 200 shots of Botox… under my arms.

Why would someone get 200 shots of Botox in her feet and underarms? Well, it’s not because I’m concerned about wrinkles.

I have this condition called hyperhidrosis. Basically, it’s excessive sweating. I have excessive sweating everywhere, but especially in my feet and underarms. I used to have it in my hands, but that seems better these days. It’s easier now that I type everything. Taking notes in high school and college was awful because my paper was always soaked.

One might ask, “But isn’t it painful to have shots in your feet and underarms?”

Why yes, yes it is. It is INCREDIBLY painful, especially in the feet (I guess because the skin is thicker?). So, the very fact that I am willing to undergo these procedures two to three times a year (depending on what my insurance covers – I would do the underarms and feet at least four times a year each if possible), gives an indication of how bad this problem really is.

The process takes about an hour. Unfortunately, my dermatologist will only do one area at a time (either the underarms or the feet), so I have to go in for two appointments. I usually have them done about a week apart. First, they clean the area with iodine and pat it with corn starch. Then I sit with ice packs on the area for about 20-30 minutes in an attempt to numb it. Finally the doctor comes in and gives me shot after shot after shot while I scream in pain and do my best not to cuss. The areas usually bruise and are uncomfortable for a few days.

I’ve been having these procedures for a couple of years, but I’ve had this condition since I was a kid. For as long as I can remember, the first thing I have done when I get home is to take off my shoes and socks. I remember my grandma commenting on my sweaty hands and feet when I was two or three.

The only shoes I wear now are Crocs or flip-flops. Luckily, Crocs have come out with some cuter styles of shoes than just the originals. I like the Mary Janes, and I have these in black, brown, and navy:

Before Crocs, I just bought cheap shoes and threw them away after a few weeks when they got too stinky. I was so excited when Crocs came along because they are washable! Really, it’s like they were invented just for me.

I usually don’t wear socks, even in the winter. When I do, they cost me $15 a pair because they are made out of materials like bamboo that don’t make my feet sweat as much. I can usually only find them at special online foot stores.

I was really excited when those “Clinical” deodorants came out a few years ago, but I’ve tried every brand and none of them work. Sometimes if I use two different brands at once (Secret with Degree on top of it), and I put them on two or three times a day, I can make it.

I never wear a shirt or bra more than once before I wash it. It’s just not possible. I NEVER wear sweaters. In fact, I rarely wear long sleeves, and my winter coat is made out of sweatshirt-like material. I think wool would just about kill me.

White shirts are almost out-of-the-question because they show yellow pit stains so quickly. Layers work well because the layer underneath absorbs the sweat before it reaches the outer layer. Shirts with prints work well, too, because they disguise pit stains and wet sweat spots better.

There is a surgery where they cut the berves to certain sweat glands, but there are a couple of drawbacks. First, many people who have had the surgery say that their bodies compensate, and just they just end up sweating more in other areas. So, maybe their underarms sweat less, but their back and chest sweat more. Second, my dermatologist knows someone who died while having the surgery, so she doesn’t recommend it to anyone.

So, know that I have shared my incredibly embarassing condition with the world, anyone else want to share something personal? 🙂


13 thoughts on “I got 200 Botox shots today, but not the fun kind

  1. Wowsas! I have heat regulation problems, I dont wear long sleeves or sweaters. I do sweat a lot, but not like your kind. I have to wipe my face. Mine is because of Babesiosis, a parasite and tickborne disease.
    I am sorry to hear you are going through that, and that botox SUCKS but glad it helps.

  2. I have to wipe my face, too. I usually keep a hand towel or wash cloth in my purse! I start sweating as soon as I get out of the shower. I put my makeup on in the car after I blast the AC at my face.

    Vietnam was awful for me, and we traveled in March and April. I can’t imagine what it would have been like in the summer. When we go back, we’re going to try to go in December.

    Everyone thinks our house is freezing, but I’m still sweating. My husband has adjusted over the years. Noah sweats, too, so he like the cold, but Zoe is always freezing. She sleeps with three blankets!

    Even with the Botox, I have sweating issues, but atv least my pits and feet don’t smell so bad!

  3. I sweat like a man. Apparently I don’t sweat like you, but I sweat like a man. My husband, on the other hand? Glistens. It’s not fair. But I’m not complaining, because I can’t imagine going through all those shots. Vietnam must have been killer.

  4. I too sweat like a man. My good sandals never last more than a couple of weeks before they stink. I am so going to buy the crocs you posted here.

  5. Ow! Don’t they use any kind of topical anesthetic? It might even be otc by now so you could bring your own with you.

    Or…you could take my friend’s approach to painful dental work. Just before the dentist started she grabbed his sensitive bits and said, “Now, you won’t hurt me and I won’t hurt you, right?” I never had the courage, but I’ve sure thought about trying that one many, many times.

    • They do have some kind of topical stuff, but you have to out it on for an hour and it’s messy. You have to keep your feet up the whole time. I don’t have many extra hours (!). I usually do the shots on a lunch break, so I just have to bear with it.

  6. Great. Now I feel bad for making fun of people over the age of 10 who wear crocs. 🙂

    My dad wears them too. He has nerve damage to his feet & can’t stand anything that constricts them & of all the shoes he’s tried, Crocs are his favorite.

  7. My daughter has the same thing! She is 8 and we haven’t ventured into Botox for it yet. My youngest daughter is going to have botox for her tippy toe walking this fall (followed by serial casting.)

  8. I have sweating issues as well. Mine started after I gave birth to my son. It worsened over the years. I have Graves Disease (hyper thyroid) but my Endochronologist said it’s not related. I just thought my hormones are way out of wack. I can’t wear sweaters and can’t sleep with anything more than a sheet. I sweat after a shower, drinking something hot, light house cleaning and any type of exertion. I haven’t found a “cure” yet for my heat intolerance. Since I’m an adult adoptee, I don’t have any medical records for comparison.
    Check out my blog sometime (it’s out dated though).

  9. Pingback: 2011 didn’t suck (or blow) | My Minivan Rocks!

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