The Efficacy of a Drionic Machine in the Treatment of Hyperhidrosis in Juvenile Amputees

K. G. TEDFORD, R. BALLANCE, S. FELLOWES, AND J. A. HARDER


Excess perspiration (hyperhidrosis) of the stump inside the socket appears to be the most common reason for removal of the prosthesis for an amputee. The purpose of this investigation was to determine the efficacy of the Drionic machine, a compact iontophoretic machine, in reducing perspiration of the limb deficient children.

Five amputees participated in the pilot study, 2 below-elbow, 2 below-knee, 1 above-knee, and used the machine according to the manufactures guidelines. Quantitative readings of sweat were measured by using Wattman's paper, a filter paper used for sweat choride testing. The filter paper was weighed prior to applying it to the clean stump of the patient and secured in position with a plastic bag that contained the entire stump. The child then applied his cleaned prosthetic socket over the bag and wore it exactly 30 minutes. During that time the child was involved in a quiet seated activity. The paper was then reweighed immediately after removal using a Mettler scale. A daily diary was also kept as the treatments were home based.

Even within this small sample the results indicated a decrease in perspiration both subjectively when reviewing the daily diary as well as comparing the measurments on the Mettler scale.

It appears that the Drionic machine may be a useful modality as a home program for perspiration management for school age amputee children.

Alberta Children's Hospital, Physiotherapy Department, 1820 Richmond Rd., S.W. Calgary, Alberta, Canada T2T 5C7