Claudia McGloin has set up a Minor Surgery Clinic. 

Claudia has completed a Minor Surgery Course in London which will see her take on the role as Nurse Consultant and will be able to perform Minor Surgical Procedures at the clinic. She also hopes to progress her surgical career and to be able to introduce other Surgical Procedures into the clinic such as Carpal Tunnel.

Click on the tabs below to find out more about the treatments.

What are Varicose Veins?

Varicose Veins are dilated veins which you can often see as bulges on the legs however, you can still have Varicose Veins that have no visible signs on the legs. These are called ‘Hidden’ Varicose veins. This occurs when the valves in these veins which stop the blood from flowing back down your legs fail and the blood flows back the wrong way down your leg, which causes the vein to start dilating or bulging. These veins can become unsightly as time goes on.

While some people with Varicose Veins have absolutely no problems at all others have symptoms such as aching legs, bulging veins and swelling. It is important at this point to see a Medical Professional and have investigations such as Doppler, Venous Duplex Ultrasound Scan to determine if you have Varicose or ‘Hidden’ Varicose Veins.

Diagnosing Varicose Veins

A Venous Duplex Ultrasound Scan is the ONLY way to accurately diagnose Varicose Veins as this Non Invasive Scan can tell which vein is incompetent and where it is.

Some clinics, hospitals and GP’s will only offer a Doppler Ultrasound Scan but this is will not be as accurate as the Duplex Scan.

Treatment for Varicose Veins

If Varicose Veins are present then the Consultant Vascular Surgeon will decide on the appropriate treatment required. Treatments available for Varicose Veins include:

•             Endovenous Laser Ablation (EVLA)

•             Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA)

•             Ultrasound Guided Foam Sclerotherapy (UGFS)

•             Ambulatory Phlebectomy

•             Transluminal Occlusion of Perforators (TRLOP)

•             Coil Embolisation of Pelvic Veins

Vein Stripping should not be a treatment option for Varicose Veins as it has been researched that Varicose Veins can grow back and cause more Thread Veins on the legs.

Common MYTHS about Varicose Veins

  • Women get Varicose Veins more often than men
  • Pregnancy causes Varicose Veins
  • You should wait until you’ve had your family before getting your Varicose Veins fixed
  • Varicose Veins are only cosmetic and can safely be left alone
  • There’s no point in operating on Varicose Veins as they always come back
  • Standing for long periods of time causes Varicose Veins

(The College of Phlebology)


What Are The Reasons For Hair Loss?

The most common cause of Male Hair Loss and Female Hair Loss is inheritance from either or both parents. Certain hair follicles contain receptors sensitive to the hormone ‘Dihydrotestosterone’ (DHT). This hormone is a by-product of testosterone which surges at puberty. Fortunately, in the vast majority of cases those follicles at the back and sides of the head do not contain the receptor sensitive to DHT and therefore last a lifetime even when transplanted to a different area.

FUT and FUE Treatment

Hair usually grows abundantly at the back and sides of the head because the hair follicles here are not influenced by the hormone Dihydrotestosterone (DHT).
Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT)
Follicular Unit Transplantation is the most exciting, up to-date form of Hair Transplant available worldwide.

Hair grows naturally in bundles of 1, 2 3 & 4 hairs per bundle. These hairs, along with their associated structures are known as the Follicular Unit.

Hair usually grows abundantly at the back and sides of the head because the hair follicles here are not influenced by the hormone Dihydrotestosterone (DHT). It is from these areas that ‘donor’ hair follicles are taken (i.e. from the ‘donor’ area). During FUT this healthy hair bearing tissue is removed in a strip. The donor area is closed with a fine suture. The healthy hair follicles are then identified, as they occur naturally, in groups of 1, 2, 3 and 4 hairs using powerful stereoscopic microscopes.

By meticulously dissecting and trimming the Follicular Units the doctor and the medical team ensure that the grafts are comprised of healthy intact hair follicles as they naturally occur in the scalp. This method has 2 distinct advantages:

Firstly, by transplanting grafts that contain naturally occurring follicular units (Follicular Unit Grafts – FUG’s) the doctor can ensure that, when transplanted, the grafts will produce hair which grows naturally, replicating the appearance of natural hair growth.

During the planting of the grafts single hair follicular unit grafts form the frontal hairline for maximum cosmetic and aesthetic effect (also known as ‘dense packing’). Behind the first three or four rows the surgeon progresses to 2 hair Follicular Units for increased density while maintaining cosmetic appearance. Well back from the hairline 3 hair follicular unit grafts are used to create more density while totally avoiding the old ‘dolls head’ effect.Secondly, because this microscopic method of dissection is so specific, graft damage and wastage is minimal, resulting in a 30% greater graft yield.

There are 4 steps in Follicular Unit Transplantation.

  • Step 1 – Graft Removal
    The donor area is ‘frozen’ (numbed) using local anaesthetic. Hair bearing tissue is removed painlessly.
  • Step 2 – Slivering
    The hair bearing tissue is divided into slivers approximately 1mm thick.
  • Step 3 – Microscopic Dissection
    The slivers are dissected using stereoscopic microscopes into Follicular Unit Grafts (FUG’s) containing 1,2, 3 and 4 hairs per graft.
  • Step 4 – Placement
    Tiny openings are made in the recipient area. The Follicular Unit Grafts are transplanted into these openings. Grafts containing 1 hair are placed in the frontal hairline. Grafts containg 2 hairs are placed behind these and so on to create a very natural appearance.
    Old techniques of Hair Transplantation used 4mm diameter cylinders of hair bundles which cut through the healthy hair and usually led to a ‘doll’s head’, ‘corn crow’ or ‘toothbrush’ effect. These old methods are now obsolete. Follicular Unit Transplantation is an excellent procedure to repair the ‘dolls head’ effect of old punch graft techniques.

It is important to note that Follicular Unit Transplantation does not create new hair but re-distributes existing healthy hair from the back of your head (called the recipient area) to the thinning or bald area. The hair grows naturally and for life.

Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE)

Follicular unit extraction or FUE is a hair transplant technique in which a small round punch is used to extract follicular units from a patient’s bald resistant donor areas. These 1, 2, 3 and 4 hair follicular unit grafts are then transplanted into a patient’s balding areas.

Given the time consuming and tedious nature of this procedure a physician is often limited to transplanting 500 to 600 follicular unit grafts in one day. The cost per graft of FUE is also typically twice the cost of the standard follicular unit hair transplant procedure in which a strip of donor tissue is removed from the back of the head and trimmed under magnification into individual follicular unit grafts.

Female Hair Loss Explained

A man may expect to lose hair as he gets older, especially if his father, uncles, or other near relatives had male-pattern baldness. A woman does not generally expect to lose hair even if there is a history of hair loss in male or female relatives. There has been a general belief that thinning hair and baldness is a ‘male thing’.

The fact is, many women do experience hair loss at young to middle age and the incidence of the most common type of female hair loss (female androgenetic alopecia) seems to be increasing [Norwood OT. Incidence of female androgenetic alopecia (female pattern baldness). Dermatol Surg 2001; 27:53-54.].

Other causes of female hair loss include thyroid disease, low iron levels, hormonal imbalance etc.

Treatment of Female Hair Loss

Many women today recognize the reality of hair loss and choose to do something about it by seeking hair restoration treatment or procedures. It is recommended that the patient seeks the advice of a doctor who specializes in the field of hair loss.

The doctor will take a full medical history and also take blood tests to establish the correct diagnosis.

In the hands of a specialist in hair transplantation, most hair loss in women can be successfully treated either medically or surgically.


Male Hair Loss Explained

Premature balding is a disheartening condition which affects both men and women. A person’s appearance is an integral part of their identity, in both how others see them and how they see themselves. Hair loss can cause a great deal of stress and anxiety for the individual. It can lower their self-esteem and their confidence in dealing with others and the public.
Wishing to restore your own, growing, natural hair should not be considered vain. A person who is losing their hair looks older because hair loss is associated with age and accentuates the signs of age including facial lines and wrinkles.

If hair loss affects your self-esteem then the decision to do something about it makes sense.

Causes of Male Hair Loss

The most common cause of hair loss is inheritance. Men and women inherit hair loss from either or both parents. Certain hair follicles contain receptors sensitive to the hormone ‘Dihydrotestosterone’ (DHT). This hormone is a by product of testosterone which surges at puberty.

Fortunately, in the vast majority of cases those follicles at the back and sides of the head do not contain the receptor sensitive to DHT and therefore last a lifetime even when transplanted to a different area.

The Claudia McGloin Clinic offer Dracula Therapy (PRP )Platelet Rich Plasma for Hairloss but we can refer patients on should they wish to have a Hair Transplant.


Did you know that 80% of all illnesses start in the large intestine?

Most people have no idea how much old, hardened, impacted faecal matter there is in their colon. Many experts believe that the average person has between 5 and 20 LBS of waste matter in their colon. A person suffering from constipation has up to 40 LBS of waste matter in their colon.

The colon or large intestine is located at the end of the human digestive tract. Its primary functions are to eliminate waste, conserve water and reabsorb electrolytes and minerals into the body. Waste materials that remain in the colon for extended periods of time (impacted faeces, dead cellular tissue, mucous and parasites etc) pose several health problems. These waste materials can be reabsorbed into the blood stream making us feel weak, tired and ill. Impacted faeces can also impair the colons ability to absorb minerals and can cause the overgrowth of bad bacteria and yeast. A build up of faecal matter in the colon can also inhibit muscular action causing sluggish bowel movements, slow transit time and constipation. Colonic Hydrotherapy can greatly alleviate the congestion and build up of unwanted toxic waste.

A Healthy Colon

The colon or large intestine is an important part of the digestive system. The colon handles the bulk of the food we eat. Its lining includes sensitive nerves and glands that aid the assimilation of food especially vitamins, enzymes and water. When the colon is working properly its peristaltic (muscular wave like) motions move food through the system and eliminate unassimilated substances in the form of waste within 16-24 hours after eating. A healthy individual with a clean and healthy colon will have 2 bowel movements per day. They should be large, well formed, buoyant and not accompanied by a foul odour.

Needless to say a healthy colon is essential to a healthy body!

A Toxic Colon

Over time the colon may become unhealthy and lose its ability to properly eliminate all the waste materials from the digestive tract. This is due to a combination of Poor Diet, Lack of Exercise, Drug Intake, Lifestyle and a variety of other factors. When the colon becomes less active the body does not eliminate its waste materials as effectively. Therefore, when the elimination process is not functioning properly deposits of waste matter build up along the colon wall. When this occurs, the waste material remains in the colon for days sometimes weeks. If this waste material deposits along the colon wall it may not leave their for months or even years. These deposits of faecal matter can get to 2 or 3 inches thick!

The Colonic Hydrotherapy treatment stimulates bowel activity by using the body’s natural nerve and muscular response mechanisms and so is essentially a natural treatment. Colonic Hydrotherapy can tone and exercise the bowel aiding the evacuation of waste both during an after the treatment.

Are you feeling or experiencing any or all of the following?

* Bloated

* Constipated

* Weight Gain

* Lethargic

* Flatulance

* Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

* Backache

* Indigestion

* Candida

* Insomnia

* Body Odour

* Dark Circles Under Eyes

* Poor Concentration

* Bloating

* Colitis

* Diverticulosis

* Diarrhoea

* Menstrual Pain

* Bad Breath

* Parasites (Worms)

Then a Colonic Hydrotherapy treatment is for you!

How your Digestive System works

How your digestive system works

  • Mouth – Food and water enter via the mouth. As we chew we start to break down the food.
  • Oesophagus – The Oesophagus carries the food and liquids to the stomach for digestion.
  • Stomach – The Stomach breaks down the food. The stomach muscles help in this process. The partly digested food is then passed down into the small bowel.
  • Liver – The Liver produces Bile which helps to break down the fats in the food. The Bile is stored in the Gall Bladder.
  • The Gall Bladder – The Gall Bladder releases the Bile into the small bowel when the food is eaten. Bile helps to break down the fats in the food.
  • The Pancreas – The Pancreas produces Enzymes which are important for digestion.
  • Small Bowel – The food is broken down further. The nutrients are absorbed into the body. The digested waste then leaves the small bowel and moves into the colon.
  • Large Bowel – The Colon absorbs water and the muscles of the colon help to move the waste towards the Rectum. The waste is held in the Rectum until it is ready to leave the body.
  • Anus – The waste is passed through the Anus as it leaves the body.

 After Care following Colonic Hydrotherapy

Just after receiving your colonic hydrotherapy treatment you will be glowing with health from the inside out – so be prepared for compliments. You will feel more peaceful, lighter, cleaner and energised.

If there has been a long-standing condition of constipation or several health problems, a slight headache or fatigue may be experienced with the first or second colonic. If this is the case, a short rest will help restore your balance.

In some cases, you may feel slightly bloated after a colonic as entrapped gas makes its way to the exit. If this is the case, have a cup of peppermint tea and lie down with a hot water bottle for a while. In rare cases, tiredness may persist for a few days, as the body continues to detoxify itself. In these cases, we recommend another colonic treatment to accelerate the process.

Since the colon has been cleared of solid matter, it may takes on average one to four days before it fills up again, and normal bowel movements are resumed.

Some water is absorbed through the colon wall during a colonic and you may notice an increased need to urinate for a few hours afterwards. This beneficial effect of flushing the kidneys may also be enhanced by drinking a few glasses of water with the juice of half a lemon added to each glass.

Eating & Drinking Tips

* Please abstain from alcohol for at least 24 hours after a treatment.

* Avoid ice cold water with meals. Sip room temperature water or warm water with lemon/ herbal teas to keep the body   hydrated.

* Avoid carbonated drinks which can make you feel bloated and gassy.

* Avoid artificial sweeteners, use honey or fructose instead.

* Keep your meals simple – do not mix too many different kids of food in one meal. Avoid any rich, hot, spicy foods for at least 24 hours.

* Chew slowly and keep you mouth closed while chewing to avoid air getting into your digestive system.

* Introduce whole grains such as brown rice, barley, oats, buckwheat etc, which are nutritionally better as they contain the true roughage which cleans up your digestive system. Generally, they are better if they are slightly under cooked. Soak the grains overnight before cooking and discard the soak water.

* Add beans and pulses into your diet as they are high in fibre. Introduce them slowly into to avoid excess gas. Soak beans overnight and discard soak water before cooking.

Other tips! 

Did you know that 70% of your Immune System is in your Colon?

The colon contains both good and bad bacteria which are flushed out during a treatment. Good bacteria are essential for a healthy immune system to avoid picking up colds, coughs, flu’s etc. In order to replace these good bacteria, we recommended natural, wheat free, gluten free, dairy free, organic probiotic to top up your system on a daily basis.

First time colonic clients results can vary dramatically, with many initial treatments being mainly about hydration with the water and massage making a start on breaking down the unnecessary waste. Then after several colonics, this will promote a good healthy colon.


  • Colonic Hydrotherapy €90
  • Colonic Enema – Choice of 6 Enemas €20 – Please ask your practitioner about an enema prior to your Colonic Treatment
  • Colonic Hydrotherapy + Colonic Enema €110
  • Colonic Hydrotherapy + Vibro Plate €100
  • Course of 3 Colonic Hydrotherapy Treatments €250
  • Course of 6 Colonic Hydrotherapy Treatments €500

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Mesotherapy for Pain Management and Sports Injuries

Mesotherapy can be used to effectively treat Muscle Soreness and Inflammation due to injury. It can also help to speed up healing time. Overuse of the muscles can cause inflammation to the muscle, which can be extremely painful and healing can be a lengthy process.

Mesotherapy can effectively treat musculoskeletal problems including tendinitis, arthritis, sprains, muscle strain, spinal disorders and back pain.

Mesotherapy is a simple French therapeutic technique that is widely used in Europe. It involves a local injection of medication into the mesoderm, as close to the site of injury as possible. It is used primarily for its analgesic, anti-inflammatory and muscle-relaxing effects.

In sports medicine, it can be of benefit to players with soft tissue injuries, who naturally aim to be able to return to play at the earliest opportunity. Sports trauma is often implicated in the treatment of soft tissue injuries. In most cases, the congestive and inflammatory reaction of these tissues before healing justifies taking pain-killing and anti-inflammatory medication.

Mesotherapy involves the delivery of small amounts of FDA-approved medications (non-cortisone, non-steroid) via local injections instead of ingesting or injecting intramuscularly or intravenously much larger dosages of medications, which are filtered in the liver and kidney and travel throughout one’s body.

Claudia McGloin Clinic specialise in these injections and is the only clinic in Ireland to offer this treatment for Pain Management and Sports Injuries.

Excessive Sweating (Hyperhidrosis)

Hyperhidrosis is a common condition where a person sweats excessively which is much more than the body needs in order to regulate its temperature.

Excessive Sweating doesn’t usually pose a serious threat to a person’s health but it can be embarrassing and distressing. The inconvenience of it can also have a negative impact on your quality of life. There is no set way of defining Excessive Sweating but if sweating is interfering with your daily life and normal activities, you may have Hyperhidrosis.

Hyperhidrosis is defined as sweating more than is needed to regulate the body’s temperature.

In cases of focal Hyperhidrosis (where only certain parts of the body are affected), the most common parts of the body to be affected are your:

  • Armpits
  • Palms of your hands
  • Soles of your feet
  • Face and chest

Some people may only have one area of their body affected by Hyperhidrosis whereas for others several areas can be affected. Both sides of the body are usually affected equally – for example, both of the feet or both hands.

Most people with Focal Hyperhidrosis have at least one episode of Excessive Sweating a week. The frequency of sweating in people with Secondary Hyperhidrosis (where the condition has an underlying cause) will depend on what the underlying cause is.

There are no guidelines to determine what constitutes “normal sweating”, but if you feel that you sweat excessively and it has started to interfere with your everyday daily activities and social life, you may have Hyperhidrosis.

For example, you may have Hyperhidrosis if:

  • You are reluctant to shake hands with someone or have other physical contact due to feeling self-conscious about your sweating.
  • You are reluctant to take part in activities such as dancing or exercise for fear that they will make your sweating worse.
  • You are finding that Excessive Sweating is interfering with your job – for example, you have difficulty holding tools or using a computer keyboard.
  • You are having problems with normal daily activities such as driving.
  • Your attempt to cope with the sweating takes up a significant amount of time – for example, you need to have frequent daily showers and change your clothes two or three times a day.
  • You become socially withdrawn and self-conscious.

Causes of Hyperhidrosis

Primary Hyperhidrosis

Most experts believe that Primary Hyperhidrosis is caused by problems with the Sympathetic Nervous System.

The sympathetic Nervous System

The Sympathetic Nervous System controls most of your body’s functions that do not require conscious thought, such as movement of food through your body and the movement of urine out of your kidneys and into your bladder.

The Sympathetic Nervous System uses sweat like a thermostat. If it senses that you are getting too hot, it will send a signal from your brain to the millions of sweat glands in your body to produce sweat. The sweat cools on your skin and reduces the temperature of your body.

Sweat glands, known as the Eccrine Glands, appear to be involved in Hyperhidrosis. Eccrine Glands are present in the greatest numbers on your armpits, hands, feet and face, which may explain why these areas are often affected by Hyperhidrosis.

It is thought that in cases of Primary Hyperhydrosis, there is a problem with the part of the brain that regulates the sweating process, that results in the brain sending signals to the Eccrine Glands, even though there is no need to cool the body.

Hyperhidrosis in families

Cases of Primary Hyperhidrosis can run in families, with 1 in 4 of all those affected having a close family relative who was (or is) affected by the condition. This would suggest that a genetic mutation is responsible.

A genetic mutation is where the instructions that are carried in all living cells become scrambled in some way, which can disrupt the normal workings of the body. Some genetic mutations can be passed down from parents to their children.

Secondary Hyperhidrosis

Common causes of Secondary Hyperhidrosis (where there is an underlying cause) include:

  • Menopause – when a woman’s monthly periods stop, usually around the age of 52
  • Over Active Thyroid Gland
  • Being drunk on alcohol or “high” on drugs – particularly stimulants such as cocaine or ecstasy
  • Withdrawing from alcohol or drugs (in people who have become addicted to them)

Some types of medications can also cause Excessive Sweating in some people. For example:

  • Anti-depressants – in particular, an antidepressant called Venlafaxine
  • Tamoxifen – which is often used to treat Breast Cancer
  • Gonadotropin-releasing hormone antagonist – which is used to treat Infertility in women and Prostate Cancer in men

Less common causes of Secondary Hyperhidrosis include:

  • Some types of infection, such as HIV or Tuberculosis (TB)
  • Parkinson’s Disease – a condition that affects the way the brain co-ordinates body movements
  • Disorders that develop inside Blood Cells or Bone Marrow, such as Leukaemia or Lymphoma (both of which are Cancers of the White Blood Cells)

Diagnosing Hyperhidrosis

If you sweat excessively, it is likely that your GP will arrange blood and urine tests to help determine whether there is an underlying medical condition that is causing it.

Your GP will ask you about the pattern of your symptoms, such as whether you sweat at night, which is unusual in cases of Primary Hyperhidrosis (where there is no obvious cause), and whether your sweating only affects a specific part of your body (focal) or all of your body (generalised).

Focal Hyperhidrosis usually has no underlying cause (Primary Hyperhidrosis), whereas generalised or secondary Hyperhidrosis tends to occur as a result of another underlying medical condition.

A confident diagnosis of Primary Hyperhidrosis can usually be made if:

  • No underlying cause has been found.
  • You have at least one episode of Excessive Sweating a week.
  • Only specific parts of your body (rather than your whole body) are affected.
  • Both of the affected body parts, such as both armpits or both hands, are excessively sweaty.
  • You do not have night sweats.

Treating Hyperhidrosis

Lifestyle changes

Changing your lifestyle and daily activities cannot cure Primary Hyperhidrosis, but it can improve your symptoms and make you feel more self-confident.

The advice listed below may help to improve your symptoms.

  • Avoid known triggers that make your sweating worse, such as spicy foods and alcohol.
  • Use antiperspirant spray frequently, rather than deodorants.
  • Avoid wearing tight, restrictive clothing and man-made fibres, such as nylon.
  • Wearing black or white clothing can help to minimise the signs of sweating.
  • Armpit shields can help to absorb excessive sweat and protect your clothes.
  • Wear socks that absorb moisture, such as thick, soft socks that are made of natural fibres, or sports socks that are designed to absorb moisture. Avoid wearing socks that are made out of synthetic (man-made) materials and change your socks at least twice a day.
  • Buy shoes that are made of leather, canvas or mesh, rather than synthetic material.

Prescription Antiperspirant

If a regular Antiperspirant has failed to control your sweating, your GP may prescribe a more powerful one for you. Aluminium chloride is often used to treat Hyperhidrosis, and it works by plugging up the sweat glands.

You will need to apply Aluminium Chloride at night just before you go to sleep. To avoid irritation, make sure that the area of skin you apply it to is dry before you apply it. You will need to wash off the Aluminium Chloride in the morning.

If you apply Aluminium Chloride to your face, be careful not to get any in your eyes. Men should avoid shaving 24 hours before and after applying Aluminium Chloride to their face.

The most common side effect of Aluminium Chloride is some mild skin irritation or itching and tingling at the site where it is applied. However, these types of side effects should pass quickly.


Iontophoresis is an effective treatment if you have Excessive Sweating that affects your hands or feet. It can also be used to treat armpits, although this is usually less effective.

If your hands and feet need treating, you place them in a bowl of water and a weak electric current is passed through the water.

If your armpits need treating, then a wet contact pad is placed against each armpit and then a current is then passed through the pad.

The current is thought to help block the sweat glands.

The treatment is not painful but the electric current can cause some mild, short-lived discomfort and skin irritation.

Each session of Iontophoresis lasts between 20 and 30 minutes and you will usually need to have two to four sessions a week. Your symptoms should begin to improve after a week or two, after which further treatment will be required at one-to-four week intervals, depending on how severe your symptoms are.

Iontophoresis has proved to be effective in 80% to 90% of cases. However, you will need to make regular visits to your local clinic to receive treatment.




Endoscopic Transthoracic Sympathectomy – ETS

Endoscopic Transthoracic Symathectomy (ETS) is a key-hole surgery technique that is 99% effective at curing Palmar Hyperhidrosis and, with a slight modification, can also cure Axillary Hyperhidrosis in 80% of people at the same time. The same technique, modified once again, can also be used for facial flushing, blushing or sweating – with a success rate of 70% for each side. It must be noted though, that there are now much better ways of treating Axillary Hyperhidrosis (armpit sweating).

Sweating in the hand is controlled by the Sympathetic Nervous System. This system is grouped together as a “chain” in the chest, on the spinal column.

Under a General Anaesthetic (GA), it is possible to put a keyhole telescope through a 1 cm incision in the armpit, to deflate the lung a little and to cut this chain. By doing this, the hand instantly becomes warmer and bone dry. If the axilla is being treated as well, removal of part of the chain can, in 4 out of 5 cases be effective at treating this.

As with all surgical procedures there are side effects and complications that patients and their relatives must be aware of before going through with this operation.

Risks of Endoscopic Transthoracic Sympathectomy

1 – Compensatory Hyperhidrosis

The body needs to lose heat and so, if the arms and head are treated by ETS, the sweat that should have come from these areas is re-distributed elsewhere. This re-distribution of sweating is called Compensatory Hyperhidrosis. It can be especially noticeable in the small of the back – and some people find this unbearable. Everybody gets Compensatory Hyperhidrosis – but only a few find it unbearable – recent research suggests over 85% of pateints are satisfied with the results of their ETS despite some increased sweating elsewhere.

2 – Damage to the Lung needing a chest drain

Rareley, in approximately 1 in 100 patients, the lung can be damaged during the surgery, leading to a tube called a “chest drain” having to be put in place for a couple of days to make sure that the lung re-inflates. Very rarely, the lung needs to be repaired after such an injury.

3 – Horner’s Syndrome

If too much of the chain is damaged, the face can become dry on the same side, the eye lid can droop a little and the eye itself can have a dilated pupil (Horner’s syndrome). This was quite common with the older styles of surgery where the chain was approached through the neck, or was destroyed by heating at ETS.

4 – Winging of the Scapula

There have been reports that the nerve to the muscle of the shoulder blade can be damaged leading to “winging” of the shoulder blade. This means that the shoulder blade moves out to the side and needs intensive physiotherapy to see if it can be brought back again.

5 – Injury to a major structure in the Chest

The chest houses some of the largest and most important structures in the body – particularly the Heart, the Great Blood Vessels and the Lungs. However, there is always a very small chance that one of these structures can be damaged. If this happens then the outcome depends on which structure is damaged and how severely.