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Ask Dr. Arun Phophalia Your Own Question
Dr. Arun Phophalia
Dr. Arun Phophalia, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 56911
Experience:  MBBS MS. Post doctoral fellowship in Sports Medicine. General surgeon and sports medicine specialist
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I want to ask about a body odour issue, Yes im not on any

Customer Question

Hi! I want to ask about a body odour issue
JA: Have you seen a doctor about this yet? What medications are you taking?
Customer: Yes im not on any medications
JA: What medications do you take daily? Are you allergic to any medications?
Customer: I’m not in any medications
JA: Is there anything else the Doctor should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: I don’t think so -
Submitted: 15 days ago.
Category: Medical
Customer: replied 15 days ago.
The body odour weirdly smells like cannabis. I don’t smoke cannabis at all. It seems to be more prevalent in the mornings - possibly after I’ve been sweating overnight whilst asleep and also when going to the gym. It’s a really odd issue and I just don’t know what to do. I spoke to my GP about it and they just laughed in my face
Expert:  Dr. Arun Phophalia replied 15 days ago.

The body odor or smell in sweat is due to the bacteria on the skin surface. When they mix with the sweat, a substance is produced which has an odor.

Read this resource about body odor;

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/sweating-and-body-odor/DS00305/DSECTION=causes

The common reason for the causative of the body odor are;

1) Hormonal; thyroid, adrenal should be investigated.

2) Any herbs, supplements, medicine should be ruled out.

3) Dietary factors can be responsible. Change of the diet specifically avoiding onions and garlic should be tried.

4) Armpits and groin should be looked for hyperhidrosis / excessive sweating.

The excessive odor that characterizes bromhidrosis may result from alteration of either apocrine or eccrine sweat. Apocrine bromhidrosis develops as a result of the formation of short-chain fatty acids and ammonia by the action of anaerobic diphtheroids on axillary (armpit) apocrine sweat. Eccrine bromhidrosis is caused by microbiologic degradation of the stratum corneum (skin layer) that has become softened by excessive eccrine sweat.

Treatments that may be helpful include cleansing with germicidal soaps, topical clindamycin or erythromycin, or topical application of aluminum, zirconium, or zinc salts.

Hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating), warm weather, obesity, and diabetes mellitus are predisposing factors. The hormones (thyroid and adrenal dysfunctions) cause sweat glands in the skin to increase in size and they respond excessively to the body's hormones (increased cholinergic sympathetic stimulation of the sweat glands in the axilla/armpits or groins).

Following treatment protocol may help;

1) dietary restriction of coffee, tea, cola soft drinks, and chocolate.

2) application of aluminum chloride hexahydrate or zirconyl chloride in absolute alcohol

3) iontophoresis, done by dermatologists in their office

4) medications like atropine, propranolol

5) Botox injection

I wish your symptoms resolve soon.

I would be happy to assist you further if you need any more information.
Thanks for using Just Answer.

Customer: replied 15 days ago.
Do you know why it would smell like cannabis
Expert:  Dr. Arun Phophalia replied 15 days ago.

The smell is due to;

1) Sweat.

2) Excretion of metabolites in the sweat (which are products of foods, drinks, medications etc).

Customer: replied 15 days ago.
but do you know why it mate specifically smell like cannabis?
Expert:  Dr. Arun Phophalia replied 15 days ago.

The characteristic odor is due to the bacterial decomposition of the oily fluid which has individual metabolic reasons. It is not associated with any specific disease. It is just characteristic of an individual.

Customer: replied 15 days ago.
Okay so it can be due to a person’s metabolism? I know you’ve listed some causes above but what do you think is likely to cause this distinctive odour?
Expert:  Dr. Arun Phophalia replied 15 days ago.

A sweat test and a skin biopsy can lead to a specific enzyme or metabolic issue. The sweat glands are likely to be responsible for the distinctive odor.

Customer: replied 15 days ago.
Okay - do you suggest anything conservatively I can do for now to limit the smell? As you can imagine it’s incredibly embarrassing - some thing I smoke cannabis when I do not at all!
Expert:  Dr. Arun Phophalia replied 15 days ago.

Your doctor can prescribe you atropine or propranol.