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Surgery Frees Teen Girl from Chronic Sweaty Hands

The Short of It

A Utah teen with a medical condition that caused her hands to sweat profusely finds relief after surgery.

The Lowdown

Despite trying prescription antiperspirants, baking soda and electrolysis, 15-year-old Hailey Bennet has suffered from excessive hand sweating her entire life. As a child, her hands were so wet she would slip off the monkey bars, and when the Cedar Hills, Utah, teen hit puberty, the problem got even worse.

"It wasn't clammy hands. It was sweat," Hailey told The Salt Lake Tribune. "Boys are a thing now. I thought, 'This isn't cute anymore.'"

After finally seeing a doctor that diagnosed Hailey with hyperhidrosis, a rare condition that causes excessive sweating, her parents, Jeannette and Matt Bennett, took their daughter to cardiothoracic surgeon John Mitchell at Utah Regional Medical Center who could cure her sweating with a surgery called a sympathectomy. During the surgery, doctors cut away pieces of a nerve on both sides of her chest so her brain is no longer able to send signals to specific areas of her body to sweat or blush.

Hailey had the surgery in December and was overjoyed to wake up with dry hands. The surgery also stopped the sweating in her armpits, but she is still able to sweat from other pores in her body.

"I woke up ... and started crying and the nurse was making me drink water, and I was hugging her and saying 'Thank you!'" Hailey said.

The Upshot

After years of suffering and embarrassment, Hailey is happy to finally have her condition cured. Now she can shake hands, play the piano and be more confident with boys—a major issue for a teen girl. Hailey is excited to start a new school year this fall, wearing clothes she picked because she likes them—not because she can wipe her hands on them without making a sweat mark!

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