Palmar sweating in anorexia nervosa

T. Inamitsu, K. Honda, N. Kobayashi, H. Tamai, C. Kubo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Palmar sweating is known to be affected by mental stress. This study was performed to investigate the significance of palmar sweating in anorexia nervosa. In a case of anorexia nervosa (a 23-year-old female) who weighed 34.85 kg on admission to our hospital, sweat rates on palm were recorded every two weeks using the apparatus for continuous recordings of local perspiration volume (Kenz-Perspiro OSS-100, Suzuken, Tokyo). Sweat volumes during relaxing with her eyes closed (CE) and sweat responses to mental arithmetic (R4F: reversing the order of 4 figures given with her eyes open) were measured and compared with the body weight and the mental state. Sweat rate during CE was found to reflect the long-term body weight changes. It was enhanced when her body weight was increasing and was reduced when her weight reached around 44 kg. Sweat responses to R4F reflected the short term changes in body weights. Spiky sweat response curves were observed while she gained weight and they diminished while her weight stopped increasing or reduced. Moreover, it was suggested that this variability of sweating responses were related to her mental state such as the willingness to get better (increased) and the fear of fatness (reduced). The relationship between the central control of sweating and that of food intake was discussed. These results suggest that the measurement of palmar sweating may serve as a new psychophysiological method of studying psychosomatic disorders.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)549-555
Number of pages7
JournalJapanese Journal of Psychosomatic Medicine
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1994
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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