In the past couple of years, I've noticed that when I workout, I sweat only on the left side of my body. It's especially obvious on my scalp,neck, and face. The left side of my face is red and sweaty and the right side is normal. I decided to just ignore it until today when I was thumbing through a magazine and read where asymmetrical sweating could be a symptom of multiple sclerosis. Upon checking the symptoms fro MS on the internet, I found nothing about asymmetrical sweating. What is your take on it?
Thanks for using the forum. I am happy to address your questions, and my answer will be based on the information you provided here. Please make sure you recognize that this forum is for educational purposes only, and it does not substitute for a formal office visit with your doctor.
It sounds like you have sweating more on one side of your face with exertion. Without the ability to review your medical history and examine you, I can not tell you what is causing your symptoms, but I will do my best to provide you with information regarding this condition in general.
More sweating on one side of the body compared to the other is called hemi- hidrosis.
In the medical literature, there has been several descriptions of patients with sudden onset of hemifacial sweating and flushing, induced by exercise and heat. This has been referred to in the medical literature as Harlequin sign (though several other genetic syndromes bare a similar name, so please do not confuse them with what you might have).
In general, hemifacial hidrosis could be due to a problem in the autonomic nervous system. This system regulates our body temperature, sweating, heart rate, etc. In understanding the cause of these symptoms, it is important to have the pupils examined to know if they constrict and dilate normally, as this is also a function of the autonomic nervous system. Also, examination of reflexes is important as well.
Hemifacial hidrosis is not common, but as I mentioned, there are several cases reported in the medical literature. Some patients have this condition but a clear cause can not be found. In other patients, causes have been identified, the underlying problem being something that is affecting the function of the autonomic nervous system. These have included damage to the fibers of the autonomic nervous system following chest surgeries (such as open heart surgeries etc.), problems in the upper (cervical) spinal cord, congenital/genetic problems present since birth, strokes, masses in the upper chest (where fibers of the autonomic nervous system pass). To my knowledge this is not a common sign of MS.
I suggest that you be evaluated by a neurologist.
Thank you for the opportunity to answer your questions, I hope you find this information useful, good luck.
Listen to the advice of Dr. Chahine. I was watching TV a couple of days ago. A program featured a story about a young woman who experienced the same symptoms. It took her years to get to the root of the problem. Dr Chahine has pointed you in the right direction.
Don't be afraid of neurologists. Most are helpful and knowledgeable.
I'm from the MS forum. This type of sweating is not typically found in MS patients.
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