Dermoscopy, also known as dermatoscopy, is a noninvasive technique primarily used to examine skin lesions. Utilizing a handheld device called a dermatoscope, the objective is to differentiate between benign and malignant tumors.
Featuring a high-quality magnifier and a polarized light system, the dermatoscope is able to see areas of the skin not visible to the naked eye. This significantly reduces the rate of unnecessary biopsies and leads to more accurate melanoma detection. Aside from melanoma detection, dermoscopy can also be used to diagnose fungal infections, hair/scalp diseases, warts, and even scabies.
At our office, all of our providers have been specially trained in dermoscopy. If they notice anything of suspicion, they will follow it very closely. Pictures will be taken, stored, and compared with pictures at the patient’s next visit. If the lesion evolves or changes, it may require a biopsy. If the lesion does not, it most likely is benign.
As you can see, dermoscopy is an important clinical tool and something that no dermatologist (MD, NP or PA) should go without. If you have something of concern on your skin and would like one of our providers to check it out, contact our office today.
Maybe you fell asleep on the beach, or forgot to pack sunscreen. However it happened, sunburn can be painful and in severe cases, even dangerous. If you do get burned:
• Take a cool shower or bath, or apply wet, cold washcloths.
• Avoid products that contain benzocaine, lidocaine, or petroleum (Vaseline).
• Cover blisters with dry bandages to prevent infection.
• Take over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen, but do not give aspirin to children.
Call a doctor if you have a serious reaction:
• Feeling faint or dizzy
• Rapid pulse or rapid breathing
• Extreme thirst, no urine output, or sunken eye
• Pale, clammy, or cool skin
• Nausea, fever, chills, or rash
• Eyes hurt and are sensitive to light
• Severe, painful blisters
Of course, it’s best to protect yourself from getting burned in the first place. Exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays can increase your risk of developing skin cancer. The American Cancer Society recommends taking these steps:
• Wear clothing and a wide-brimmed hat to protect as much skin as possible. Protect your eyes with sunglasses that block at least 99% of UV light.
• Use sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 30: reapply at least every 2 hours, and after swimming or sweating.
• Avoid direct exposure to the sun, especially between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., when rays are strongest.
• Avoid tanning beds and sunlamps: both can cause serious long-term skin damage and contribute to skin cancer.
Source: American Cancer Society, Healthy Living
With the huge success of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), many people have become familiar with some of the franchise’s most popular superheroes. Whether it be Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, or the Hulk, the superheroes have captivated moviegoers throughout the globe for over a decade. With such a unique and iconic look, the Hulk may be the one hero that stands out the most.
Characterized as a large mutant monster with green skin, the Hulk developed his appearance from an exposure to gamma radiation. Although the concept of becoming a large mutant monster may not be feasible in real life, it is in fact possible for the color of skin to turn (or appear) green.
Some ways that skin can do that includes:
• Prolonged contact to cheap gold, copper, and certain metals typically found in inexpensive jewelry.
• Exposure to strong chlorine levels in water.
• During the process of bruising there is a stage where the iron in the blood turns green and can become visible through the skin.
• Patients experiencing multiple organ failure may be at risk for unusual pigmentation effects from feeding tube dyes.
• Condition known as gangrene can cause the skin to appear green prior to turning black.
If you notice the color of your skin changing, contact your doctor immediately, as it may be a sign of a more serious medical condition.
Psoriasis is a relatively common condition that typically affects the skin and joints. Occurring on the scalp, elbows, knees, and more uncommonly hands and feet, it can lead to painful complications such as arthritis and severe itching. Although there is currently no way to prevent psoriasis, there are a variety of treatment options that can effectively control the condition.
Some treatment options for psoriasis include topical agents, phototherapy, and systemic agents. Typically used for mild cases, topical agents consist of cortisone creams, moisturizers, skin lotions, ointments, and dandruff shampoos. Then for moderate cases, phototherapy or light therapy is utilized. This method of treatment involves exposing the skin to ultraviolet light which in turn suppresses the immune system and reduces the inflammatory response. Exposure must be monitored because too much can lead to burning of the skin, similar to a sun burn. When psoriasis is resistant to these other types of treatment or is considered severe, it is then treated with systemic agents. Systemic agents are prescription medications that are administered orally or through injection.
While all these treatments listed above prove to be beneficial, some can potentially lead to negative side effects. Schedule an appointment with our office today for appropriate diagnosis and treatment of psoriasis.
During the Halloween season, more and more people are wearing make-up or putting some sort of product on their skin. This can cause skin conditions to arise though if certain preventative measures are not taken. So, what are some things you can do to avoid any adverse skin reactions?
As you may know, removing make-up before bed is important, but that alone is not enough (especially for those with sensitive skin). Some people have pores that are prone to deposits of oils which can lead to a condition known as acne cosmetica, a skin condition characterized by reddened bumps and blocked pores on the cheeks, forehead, and chin. The best way to avoid this is to apply products that are lighter in weight, as they are less likely to clog the pores. Try using powders instead of creams.
Some other skin conditions that can result from certain make-ups or products are irritant contact dermatitis and allergic contact dermatitis. Irritant contact dermatitis can be characterized as burning and irritation on the skin, whereas allergic contact dermatitis is a more traditional allergic reaction usually characterized by itching, blisters or swelling. Many times, preservatives and fragrance ingredients are the causes of these skin conditions. Accordingly, products that are labeled fragrance-free and hypoallergenic (less likely to cause an allergic reaction) are the best for keeping your skin looking good.
If you believe you are experiencing any of these conditions, call our office at 716-688-0020 today to schedule an appointment.