The amount of compensatory sweating depends on the patient, the damage that the white rami communicans incurs, and the amount of cell body reorganization in the spinal cord after surgery.
Other potential complications include inadequate resection of the ganglia, gustatory sweating, pneumothorax, cardiac dysfunction, post-operative pain, and finally Horner’s syndrome secondary to resection of the stellate ganglion.

After severing the cervical sympathetic trunk, the cells of the cervical sympathetic ganglion undergo transneuronic degeneration
After severing the sympathetic trunk, the cells of its origin undergo complete disintegration within a year.

Spinal cord infarction occurring during thoraco-lumbar sympathectomy
J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry 1963;26:418-421 doi:10.1136/jnnp.26.5.418

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

significant fall in left circumflex coronary flow was proportional to the decline in external heart work due to sympathectomy

sympathectomy affects the heart, sweating, and circulation

heart rate was significantly reduced at rest (14%), at sub-maximal exercise (12.3%), and at peak exercise (5.7%), together with a significant increase in oxygen pulse (11.8, 12.7, and 7.8%, respectively). The rate pressure product (RPP) was also significantly reduced following the surgical procedure at all three study stages, while all other physiological variables measured remained unchanged. It is suggested that thoracic-sympathetic denervation affects the heart, sweating, and circulation of the respective denervated region

Eur J Appl Physiol. 2008 Sep;104(1):79-86. Epub 2008 Jun 10.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

"ETS has proved moderately successful in treating hyperhidrosis, although the operation does carry a high risk of complications. "

Other complications of ETS include:
  • sweating on the face and neck after eating food (gustatory sweating),
  • inflammation of the nose (rhinitis), and
  • air becoming trapped between the layers of the lung (pneumothorax) which can cause chest pain and breathing difficulties (although this usually resolves itself without the need for treatment).
Rarer complications of ETS include:
  • Horner's syndrome, a condition that causes drooping of the eyelids, and
  • damage to the phrentic nerve (a nerve that is used to help in breathing).
Phrentic nerve damage can lead to shortness of breath, though it may be possible to repair the nerve during surgery.