Throughout an average day, our bodies naturally perspire as a way to regulate heat. However, some individuals (as many as 1 to 2 % of the population) sweat excessively and unpredictably in the face, hands and/or feet — even in cool temperatures or when they are resting. This condition, known medically as Hyperhidrosis, is defined as the production of perspiration beyond what is necessary to control body heat.
The process of sweating is controlled by the sympathetic nervous system, which maintains the five million or so sweat glands throughout the body (about two-third of these sweat glands are located in the hands alone). The answer to the problem of Hyperhidrosis lies with these nerves. Doctors have found that “supercharged” nerves cause this excessive sweating.
Family genetic history is believed to play a major role in the incidence of hyperhidrosis, but gender and race have not been determined to be contributing factors.
Hyperhidrosis can cause significant physical as well as emotional discomfort, and patients seeking treatment for the condition may wish to try a surgical alternative when other treatments have not worked.
The surgical cures for hyperhidrosis Dr. Reisfeld perform are finely tuned and procedures that take advantage of the latest endoscopic techniques:
Endoscopic Thoracic Sympathectomy – This procedure is used to treat excessive sweating in the hands or face. The surgeon makes 2 or 3 tiny surgical cuts under each arm and uses an endoscope inserted into the patient’s to guide the process of “inactivating” the nerves that control sweating in the problem area.
Endoscopic Lumbar Sympathectomy – This procedure is used to treat excessive sweating in the feet. An incision is made from the abdomen around to the back just above the buttocks. The muscles are separated, and the appropriate lumbar nerves are located and cut. Sympathectomy is done on an outpatient basis. Since the incisions are minimal, the patient can return to normal activity in a short amount of time.
Learn more about Endoscopic Thoracic Sympathectomy (Surgery for Sweaty Hands)
Learn more about Endoscopic Lumbar Sympathectomy (Surgery for Sweaty Feet)
Meet our Hyperhidrosis Expert
Dr. Rafael Reisfeld, M.D., F.A.C.S., A.B.M.S
One of the world ‘s foremost experts on hyperhidrosis and its treatments, Dr. Reisfeld was one of the first doctors every to perform the ETS procedure and remains one of the only doctors in the U.S. to perform both the lumbar and thoracic sympathectomy on a daily basis. He is continually pioneering new techniques in this specialized field of medicine, including a new less invasive and more efficient laser technique for the treatment of isolated axillary (armpit) hyperhidrosis. Dr. Reisfeld publishes widely on the subject of hyperhidrosis in various medical journals and has been interviewed by Newsweek, Fox News, CBS and other mainstream print and broadcast media.
A Board-Certified surgeon, and Diplomat of the American Board of Surgery, Dr. Reisfeld has been practicing medicine since 1980. He is a graduate of the prestigious Hadassah Medical School of the Hebrew University in Israel. His surgical residency was completed at the University of Toronto. In addition to his surgical duties at K and B Surgical Center, Dr. Reisfeld currently practices at The Center for Hyperhidrosis in Los Angeles.
Gregg Kai Nishi, M.D., F.A.C.S.
Dr. Nishi brings a wealth of expertise and experience to the Khalili Center. He’s an expert in innovative, minimally invasive surgical techniques and has spoken extensively on the subject, having appeared in a variety of news media, including Good Morning America and the Los Angeles Times. He has trained a number of other bariatric surgeons who have gone on to head up bariatric programs all over the country in their own right.
Formerly the Assistant Director of the Cedars-Sinai Center for Minimally Invasive and Weight Loss Surgery, Dr. Nishi was also an attending surgeon in Trauma Services and Surgical Intensive Care at Cedars-Sinai. He is one of the principal investigators of the FDA trials on a new procedure called TOGA (incision-less weight loss surgery), and is one of only a handful of surgeons in the U.S. who have performed this procedure.
Currently Assistant Clinical Professor of Surgery at the David Geffen School of Medicine, UCLA, Dr. Nishi has published widely in such journals as American Surgeon and Bariatric Times, and lectures on weight loss surgery at national and international bariatric surgery conferences. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Paul Rubenstein, MD Prize for Excellence in Resident Research Abstract and Awards Presentation; the Society of Laproendoscopic Surgeons Resident Achievement Award; and the Leo G. Rigler, MD Award for Academic Achievement from Cedars-Sinai. An Associate Fellow of the American College of Surgeons, Dr. Nishi is also a member of SAGES, the Society of American Gastrointestinal Endoscopic Surgeons; American Medical Association; and Society of Laparoendoscopic Surgeons.
After earning his Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from the University of California, Irvine and a medical degree from George Washington University School of Medicine, Dr. Nishi went on to intern in the Department of Surgery at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, New York, where he was named resident of the year. He received his surgical training at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center including a Fellowship in Surgical Critical Care. A Southern California native, Dr. Nishi lives in Los Angeles with his lovely wife and young daughter. Dr. Nishi enjoys skiing, biking, and car racing.
Eraj Basseri, M.D.
Dr. Eraj Basseri, a general and bariatric surgeon, is one of the partners at the Khalili Center. Dr. Basseri was intimately involved in developing the Khalili Center, working with his colleagues Doctors Theodore M. Khalili and Gregg Kai Nishi to bring to life a unique, comprehensive and holistic approach to bariatric and general surgery care. Dr. Basseri is fiercely committed to providing patients the best and most individualized medical care possible. His friendly, easygoing approach and personal warmth put patients at ease the moment they meet him. His educational approach allows patients to better understand and become actively involved in their own medical care.
Dr. Basseri is knowledgeable of the latest and most innovative surgical techniques and equipment available. Instrumental in training and bringing da Vinci robotic surgery availability to the Center, he is dedicated to having the best and latest technology for Khalili Center patients.
Dr. Basseri received a Bachelor of Science in Neuroscience from University of California, Los Angeles; and received his Doctor of Medicine from the University of California, San Diego. He completed a coveted fellowship in the Minimally Invasive and Weight Loss Surgery Department at Cedars Sinai. His innate surgical skills were continually singled out during his tenure there and he received the Society of Laparoendoscopic Surgeons Resident Achievement award as well as an appointment as Administrative Chief Resident. Dr. Basseri is a member of the Society of American Gastrointestinal & Endoscopic Surgeons (SAGES) and the Society of Laparoendoscopic Surgeons (SLS). He has published numerous research papers and presented on a number of topics both nationally and internationally.
A native of Los Angeles, Dr. Basseri enjoys playing basketball, weightlifting, and spending time with his family and friends.