Acne is the term for the blocked pores (blackheads and whiteheads), pimples, and deeper lumps (cysts or nodules) that can appear typically on the face, neck, chest, back, shoulders and upper arms. Seventeen million Americans currently have acne, making it the most common skin disease in the country. While it affects mostly teenagers, and almost all teenagers have some form of acne, adults of any age can have it. Acne is not life-threatening, but it can cause physical disfigurement (scarring) and emotional distress.
Treatment for acne varies depending on the type and severity of lesions, as well as the patient’s skin type, age and lifestyle. Options include:
- Topical Medications
- Isotretinoin (previously known as Accutane)
- Blackhead Extraction
- Photodynamic Therapy
- Skin Care Products
- Blue Light Treatments
- Laser Treatments
Acne scarring can be treated in a variety of ways as well. These include:
- Chemical Peels
- Soft Tissue Fillers
- Laser/Pulsed Light Treatments
We also use blue and red light for treatments in addition to the other acne treatment options.
Warts are a common condition that develops on different areas of the body as a result of infection by a type of human papillomavirus (HPV). There are several different types of warts, which may have a different appearance and tend to occur in different areas. In general, warts tend to appear on warm, moist parts of the body, such as the hands, feet knees and elbows.
Although they can affect anyone, warts are most common in children and young adults, as they are passed through direct contact with an infected area. Warts often appear as small skin growths that may be flat or slightly raised, and can be brown, gray, pink or skin-colored. Your doctor can diagnose warts through a simple physical exam.
While warts are not usually considered harmful, they may be painful or embarrassing and should be thoroughly treated to relieve symptoms and prevent them from spreading to other people or other parts of the body. Most warts can be treated through conservative methods such as applying salicylic acid or cantharidin or by undergoing cryotherapy (freezing) treatments. Resistant warts may require surgical treatment through excision or laser surgery.
Your dermatologist will determine the most effective treatment option for you after a thorough evaluation of your condition.
Eczema is a group of inflamed skin conditions that result in chronic itchy rashes. In children and in a few adults, it can be referred to as atopic dermatitis. About 15 million people in the U.S. suffer from some form of eczema, including 10-20 percent of all infants. Symptoms vary from person to person but often include dry, red, itchy patches on the skin which break out in rashes when scratched.
Objects and conditions that trigger itchy eczema outbreaks may include rough or coarse materials touching the skin, excessive heat or sweating, soaps, detergents, disinfectants, fruit and meat juices, dust mites, animal saliva and danders, upper respiratory infections and stress.
Treatment involves the restriction of scratching, use of moisturizing lotions or creams, cold compresses and nonprescription anti-inflammatory corticosteroid creams and ointments. If this proves insufficient, physicians may prescribe corticosteroid medication, antibiotics to combat infection, or sedative antihistamines. Phototherapy is a common procedure that uses light to reduce rashes. For severe cases, immunosuppressive drugs may be recommended.
Itching is a skin sensation that can occur anywhere on the body as a result of many different causes. Itching causes a tingling feeling that triggers a need for the skin to be scratched. Some causes of itching include:
- Insect bits
- Dry skin
- Contact dermatitis
- Allergic reactions
Itching can be controlled by avoiding scratching, wearing loose clothing and applying moisturizing lotion. Most itching does not require medical treatment and disappears on its own.
A cyst is a fluid-filled lump that forms in the deeper layers of skin when a hair follicle becomes blocked. They can be uncomfortable and unsightly but are harmless (benign). Nevertheless, any suspicious growth on the skin should be examined by a dermatologist to determine whether it is cancerous. If infected, a cyst may require treatment with antibiotics. Patients with large or painful cysts may choose to undergo minor surgery. Cysts can occur anywhere on the body but commonly appear on the face and scalp, trunk and fingernails. They include acne whiteheads and comedones, milia, and dermoid, epidermal, trichilemmal and pilar cysts.
A skin tag is a common type of skin growth that looks like a piece of hanging skin and most often develops on the neck, underarms, eyelids and under the breasts often as a result of clothing rubbing against the skin. Most skin tags are acquired, although some people are born with them.
While skin tags are not cancerous and don’t cause problems unless they are continuously irritated, many people choose to have them removed for precautionary or cosmetic purposes. There are several different ways to effectively remove skin tags, including freezing, burning and removing with scissors.
Contact our office to learn more about the Medical Conditions that we treat, or to make an appointment.