If heavy sweating has no underlying medical cause, it's called primary hyperhidrosis. This type occurs when the nerves responsible for triggering your sweat glands become overactive and call for more perspiration even when it's not needed. Primary hyperhidrosis may be at least partially hereditary.

If the sweating can be attributed to an underlying medical condition, it's called secondary hyperhidrosis.

Health conditions that may cause excessive sweating include:

  1. Diabetic hypoglycemia
  2. Endocarditis
  3. Fever of undetermined cause
  4. Generalized anxiety disorder
  5. Heart attack
  6. Heat exhaustion
  8. Hyperhidrosis
  9. Hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid)
  10. Leukemia
  11. Malaria
  12. Medication side effects, such as sometimes experienced when taking some beta blockers and antidepressants
  13. Menopause
  14. Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma
  15. Obesity
  16. Stress
  17. Tuberculosis

Causes shown here are commonly associated with this symptom. Work with your doctor or other health care professional for an accurate diagnosis.

Oct. 14, 2015