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How Dermatologists Treat Vitiligo

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

How Dermatologists Treat Vitiligo

For those that recall the 80’s and 90’s, the King of Pop, Michael Jackson, seemed to go from being a man with darker skin, to apparently becoming much lighter. Critics alleged that he did this because he wanted to become white, or have lighter skin. Jackson himself said that he suffered from a skin condition that caused the loss of pigmentation. While it’s true the King of Pop had an odd relationship to himself, his image, and his body, it’s also true that such a skin condition exists and it affects many Americans of color in often distressing ways.

The condition is known as Vitiligo. Though the root cause is not entirely clear, it happens when the immune system begins attacking melanocytes or the cells that produce melanin. This causes those with darker complexions to lose pigmentation in a blotchy random way. Other symptoms may include the premature whitening of the hair, loss of color in the tissues inside the mouth and nose, and loss of color in the retina of the eye. The root cause of Vitiligo may be genetic, but it oftens seems to have a trigger event. The trigger event can be sunburn, stress, trauma, or exposure to chemicals.

“Vitiligo affects those with darker colored skin,” says one dermatologist from Cameron Park, California. “Medically, we need to run tests to rule out other possible conditions. Vitiligo isn’t life threatening but it can cause complications, such as higher sensitive to sun exposure, hearing loss, and inflammation in the eye, so those are things we need to look at when treating the disorder, because there’s no real way to cure the underlying cause, but we can help people restore some of the color to their skin.”

“If the condition is caught early enough, corticosteroids creams have proven effective to restore some of the color,” he continued. “But it can also cause problems too. Another option is an ointment that acts on the immune system, which works well for people with smaller areas of depigmentation. Another option is psoralen combined with light therapy. This has proven effective, but it may require up to 3 treatments a week for an entire year to restore pigmentation.”

“The final option, which is the one made famous by Michael Jackson, is complete depigmentation. In most cases this is used as a final option when the Vitiligo is too widespread to treat topically or when all other treatments have failed. Depigmentation is also irreversible and patients that have undergone this treatment are always going to be very sensitive to sunlight. ”

Disclaimer: We are unable to guarantee any result, even though most of our patients do see success. The results of our services will vary greatly to each patient’s level of commitment and compliance with the program.

dermatologist Cameron Park

Can You Get Rid of Acne Scars?

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Can You Get Rid of Acne Scars?

Facial scars can be awfully damaging to a person’s self-confidence, which is one of the reasons why acne is such a cruel condition, happening as it does, during those years in which we’re the most self-conscious about our appearance. Some folks, with very bad acne are prone to developing scars, particularly if the acne was not treated properly or the person in question had the nasty habit of popping their pimples. There is also an higher risk of aggravating the skin through the misuse of over the counter medications that dry out the skin, or the use of home remedies like tea tree oil or lemon juice that do the same thing. While many over the counter medications can be effective at treating acne as it occurs, those that end up having massive breakouts can still be left scarring and pockmarks as a result of the condition, and some folks actually end up getting acne later in their lives into their adulthood.

How do dermatologists treat acne and scarring related to acne?

“Fundamentally, those are two different things,” says one dermatologist from San Francisco. “For those that are concerned about severe acne, a dermatologist can direct their treatment which sometimes will employ over the counter medications, and in some instances will require prescription medication including pills that can help prevent or reduce breakouts. For those that have scarring later in life on their face caused by acne, there are a number of treatments that cosmetic dermatologists use to treat scarring, and fundamentally, acne scarring is no different than other forms of scarring.”

“In order to remove scarring from the skin, dermatologists employ some form of dermabrasion, which basically entails removing or killing off the surface layer of cells,” he continued. “This allows the collagen in the scar tissue to grow back healthier. This is roughly the same method employed for removing age spots and wrinkles. The basic concept is the same. Remove the surface layer of skin, and allow it to grow back. In terms of scarring, not just acne but any kind of scarring, we’ve had a great deal of success making folks look better. Acne scars are no different in that regard and respond well to newer treatments, even when the scarring is very deep. We’ve developed ways of dealing with deeper scars using laser therapies that have proven effective at getting into the deeper layers of skin, so the treatment is not more effective than ever. We’ve come a very long way.”

Disclaimer: We are unable to guarantee any result, even though most of our patients do see success. The results of our services will vary greatly to each patient’s level of commitment and compliance with the program.

dermatologist san francisco

Cosmetic Uses for Laser Skin Resurfacing

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Cosmetic Uses for Laser Skin Resurfacing

For those that are researching the possibilities of laser skin resurfacing, the procedure is considered very effective for a number of cosmetic purposes, including the reduction of age related skin damage. The most important thing to consider before hand is what specifically you’re looking to change or fix about your appearance, and then working out which procedure would be right for you. This article is a rundown of the sorts of cosmetic procedures done with laser skin resurfacing.

#1. Wrinkle Removal

Laser surgery is effective at treating various lines and wrinkles that appear on our faces as we age, but it is not the only method for removing wrinkles. All treatments aimed at removing wrinkles operate on the same basic principle. The idea is to remove damaged skin from the surface, and encourage the regrowth of skin in that area. The skin that comes back is generally smoother and better than the older skin that was there before.

#2. Tattoo Removal

Laser skin resurfacing is considered the best and most effective method for removing unwanted tattoos. The process works by directing the laser into the surface of the skin. The laser breaks up the ink molecules and this allows them to be flushed by the immune system. It generally takes multiple treatments to remove a tattoo, since tattoos are meant to be permanent. The process will cause the tattoo to fade a little bit after each treatment. Treatments are scheduled at least 3 weeks apart so that the skin has a chance to rejuvenate itself and heal.

#3. Removal of Superficial Scars

Scars caused by acne or other trauma to the skin can be effectively treated with laser skin resurfacing. The idea there is that the laser destroys surface layers of collagen, or scar tissue, and allows it to grow back in a more uniform way, so that it is much less noticeable. Stretch marks are often treated with laser removal.

#4. Skin Tags

Depending on the kind of skin tag, laser removal can be an effective treatment for age spots, warts, moles, and freckles. The laser breaks down the cells, and allows them to regrow without the skin tag. Generally speaking, since many of these skin tags are caused by sun exposure, it is recommended that folks wear sunscreen to avoid the regrowth of these blemishes.

“Laser treatment is a safe and effective way to treat a variety of skin blemishes,” says one skin doctor from Roseville, California, “but not everyone is going to be a candidate for the procedure, and in some cases, it may be determined by your doctor that laser treatment would only make matters worse. For those folks, there are other methods which may prove more effective.”

Disclaimer: We are unable to guarantee any result, even though most of our patients do see success. The results of our services will vary greatly to each patient’s level of commitment and compliance with the program.

skin doctor roseville

Tattoo Removal: How it Works

Monday, September 25, 2017

Tattoo Removal: How it Works

Whereas once tattoos were the domain of sailors, for the past decade or two they’ve become quite the fashion statement, with celebrities, rock stars, hipsters, frat boys, and college girls all adorning themselves with ink. While most of these folks have gone out of their way to choose something they can live with for the rest of their lives and enjoy showing off, there are a number of folks that will live to regret the decision. That tattoo may have looked hot when you were hitting the clubs in college, but now that you’re a mother of two with a full time job in an office somewhere, it may no longer be the image that you want to put out to people. Fortunately, tattoo removal is not impossible.

For those who have gone through the painful experience of regretting the tattoo with our first girlfriend’s name on it, or don’t want to have to explain the lascivious devil tattoo to our congregation every Sunday, there are a few effective treatments for getting rid of a tattoo.

“The most popular treatment for tattoo removal is laser treatment,” says one dermatologist from Pleasanton, California. “Though there are other treatments such as dermabrasion, laser removal is widely regarded as the most effective option. Basically, a laser is aimed at the tattoo that the patient wants to see removed. The laser penetrates the skin, breaking down the ink.”

Dermatologists warn that the process isn’t immediate, and that it can often take multiple sessions in order to completely destroy the ink in the skin, but also say that it’s likely they will see some fading shortly after the procedure is performed.

“We’re going to want to schedule treatments at least 3 weeks apart,” says one dermatologist from Placerville. “The idea is to allow the immune system to get rid of the ink particles, and we want the natural healing process of the skin to work itself all the way through before we try again. For obvious reasons, laser treatment encourages the regrowth of skin by destroying old skin, so there’s a limit in how much skin can be safely destroyed in one treatment.”

For those wondering if the process is painful, most patients report that it is, likening it to being splashed by hot grease from a pan.

“There’s going to be somewhat of a burning sensation,” he continued. “Laser treatment involves a concentrated beam of light being directed at the skin, so there is going to be burning and discomfort. It doesn’t feel good. Typically, we recommend taking ibuprofen or naproxen for the pain. It helps take the edge off. Aspirin is not recommended because it thins the blood and can cause bruising.”

Disclaimer: We are unable to guarantee any result, even though most of our patients do see success. The results of our services will vary greatly to each patient’s level of commitment and compliance with the program.

dermatologist pleasanton

dermatologist placerville

Can You Get Rid of Acne Scars?

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Can You Get Rid of Acne Scars?

Facial scars can be awfully damaging to a person’s self-confidence, which is one of the reasons why acne is such a cruel condition, happening as it does, during those years in which we’re the most self-conscious about our appearance. Some folks, with very bad acne are prone to developing scars, particularly if the acne was not treated properly or the person in question had the nasty habit of popping their pimples. There is also an higher risk of aggravating the skin through the misuse of over the counter medications that dry out the skin, or the use of home remedies like tea tree oil or lemon juice that do the same thing. While many over the counter medications can be effective at treating acne as it occurs, those that end up having massive breakouts can still be left scarring and pockmarks as a result of the condition, and some folks actually end up getting acne later in their lives into their adulthood.

How do dermatologists treat acne and scarring related to acne?

“Fundamentally, those are two different things,” says one dermatologist from San Francisco. “For those that are concerned about severe acne, a dermatologist can direct their treatment which sometimes will employ over the counter medications, and in some instances will require prescription medication including pills that can help prevent or reduce breakouts. For those that have scarring later in life on their face caused by acne, there are a number of treatments that cosmetic dermatologists use to treat scarring, and fundamentally, acne scarring is no different than other forms of scarring.”

“In order to remove scarring from the skin, dermatologists employ some form of dermabrasion, which basically entails removing or killing off the surface layer of cells,” he continued. “This allows the collagen in the scar tissue to grow back healthier. This is roughly the same method employed for removing age spots and wrinkles. The basic concept is the same. Remove the surface layer of skin, and allow it to grow back. In terms of scarring, not just acne but any kind of scarring, we’ve had a great deal of success making folks look better. Acne scars are no different in that regard and respond well to newer treatments, even when the scarring is very deep. We’ve developed ways of dealing with deeper scars using laser therapies that have proven effective at getting into the deeper layers of skin, so the treatment is not more effective than ever. We’ve come a very long way.”

Disclaimer: We are unable to guarantee any result, even though most of our patients do see success. The results of our services will vary greatly to each patient’s level of commitment and compliance with the program.

dermatologist san francisco

Is it Safe to Remove Moles with Apple Cider Vinegar?

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Is it Safe to Remove Moles with Apple Cider Vinegar?

Not everyone is deeply thrilled with having moles and other skin tags that they deem unsightly. Depending on the size and location of the mole, opinions vary on whether or not it’s a sexy beauty mark or a blemish that draws too much attention to itself. Those that are looking for a cheap and easy way to remove the moles themselves, often look for home or natural remedies that circumvent expensive doctor visits and procedures. The truth is, that unless the mole is cancerous, most people’s health insurance isn’t going to cover the procedure. So many look for other methods for removing the mole. One of the most popular methods is the use of apple cider vinegar.

The method that’s advocated on many websites throughout the internet advises those who want to get rid of their moles to perforate the mole with a needle, apply petroleum jelly around the mole so that the skin surrounding it is not affected, and then applying the apple cider vinegar to the mole over the course of a week. This will cause the mole to crust over and become a scab, eventually falling off completely. Some folks report that this process works just fine, while others say it didn’t work them. In the worst cases, the apple cider vinegar leaves behind unsightly scarring.

“The biggest danger to self-administering skin treatment,” says one dermatologist from Walnut Creek, “is that we’re not going to know if the mole was cancerous or not. The procedure for removing a cancerous mole is a bit different than a cosmetic treatment. There’s no doubt in my mind that a process of chemically burning the mole, like the one described above, leaves behind some melanocytes, and in the case of a cancerous mole, there’s going to melanoma left behind. When a doctor performs a procedure on a cancerous mole, the idea is to remove the mole but then also remove some of the tissue underneath the mole so that we’re sure that we’ve gotten all of it.”

He also cautioned that if you perform the procedure yourself, despite doctor’s recommendations that you should examine the mole properly.

“Doctors use the mnemonic ABCDE for diagnosing a cancerous mole. A stands for asymmetry. If the mole is asymmetrical then it to be looked at. B is for border. If the border is fuzzy then it needs to be looked at. C is for color. If the mole is not uniformly colored, then we need to take a closer look. D is for diameter. If the mole is bigger than the tip of a pencil eraser, then we need to take a closer look. E is for evolving. If the mole is showing signs of getting larger, changing shape, or color, then we need to take a closer look at it. Obviously, the best thing you can do is have a doctor remove the mole.”

Disclaimer: We are unable to guarantee any result, even though most of our patients do see success. The results of our services will vary greatly to each patient’s level of commitment and compliance with the program.

skin treatment walnut creek

How to Get Rid of a Double Chin

Friday, September 22, 2017

How to Get Rid of a Double Chin

For years, the process of getting rid of unwanted fat in smaller locations was stultified by the fact that some of the best treatments weren’t precise enough to do the job effectively. That left folks with only one non-surgical choice, Kybella, which is a chemical treatment aimed at melting the fat cells.

“Kybella was introduced and cleared by the FDA in 2015,” says one cosmetic dermatologist who works at a facility for skin treatment in San Francisco. “Before that, the only option available to patients was either a facelift or liposuction, both of which are surgical procedures that have extended recovery periods. Kybella was noteworthy because it was a simple injection. Not only that, but for individuals that had a moderate amount of fat underneath their chin, it proved remarkably effective at erasing their double chin.”

“With the introduction of CoolSculpting however,” he continued, “there was a possibility of adapting that treatment for submental fat removal, but not until recently did we have the tools to do that. Zeltiq introduced the CoolMini which made it easier for doctors to reach smaller areas like underneath the chin.”

What’s the difference? According to doctors the methodology used in removing unwanted fat is very different.

“CoolSculpting dissolves fat by freezing the fat cells and thus killing them, and then the body flushes the dead cells out of your body through the lymphatic system” he said. “Kybella is an injectable that causes the membranes of the fat cells to dissolve and the excess waste is flushed through the lymphatic system.”

“In terms of the effectiveness of each treatment, both treatments have proven very effective,” he continued. “Coolsculpting tends to run about $500 more per treatment, but has proven to be less prone to operator error. The issue for folks is post-procedure weight gain. If they do gain weight after the procedure is performed, then there may be a tendency for the fat to come back disproportionately. While the same can be said of Kybella, there’s also an increased risk of the doctor not distributing the injection uniformly which can result in the double chin not being completely erased. Obviously, a capable doctor that knows how to perform the procedure properly will not have their patients complaining about part of their double chin still being there. But both treatments administered properly are equally effective and very non-invasive, especially when compared to liposuction and other similar surgical procedures. Those interested in their options should talk to their doctor about which course of treatment would be better.”

Disclaimer: We are unable to guarantee any result, even though most of our patients do see success. The results of our services will vary greatly to each patient’s level of commitment and compliance with the program.

skin treatment san francisco

3 Habits That Will Help You Take Care of Your Skin

Thursday, September 21, 2017

3 Habits That Will Help You Take Care of Your Skin

While good skin care alone is not a sure fire way to prevent all kinds of unsightly skin disorders, it certainly helps those willing to take their skin care seriously hedge their bets. It is especially important for those in their teens, as their skin is more prone than most to develop conditions like acne, which can eventually lead to scarring. While this scarring can be treated, it’s also true that it costs a good deal of money to effectively treat it. So making sure that you develop good skin care management from a young age is the key to sustaining a healthy appearance down the road.

#1. Sun Protection

It’s important for folks to understand that one of the major reasons that their skin develops issues is due to the sun itself, especially when it’s at its peak from 10am to 2pm.

“Most people believe that sunscreen is only for when you’re going to the beach,” says one dermatologist from Palo Alto. “Not true. It’s a good idea to wear it on sunny days, especially in the summer. It will help prevent wrinkles, the formation of moles, and other forms of skin damage like age spots, and it helps reduce the risk of skin cancer as well. It’s very important to protect your skin from the sun.”

#2. Smoking

Smoking will cause you to age quicker, at least in terms of your appearance, and beyond that, it can greatly decrease both your lifespan and the quality of your life. It causes your appearance to look older by constricting the blood vessels in the skin, which in turn reduces blood flow to the outermost layers of skin. It depletes the skin of nutrients it needs for the best skin health.

#3. Wash Yourself Properly

There are a number of cosmetic errors that folks make in the bathroom that can compromise their skin. Long hot baths and showers may be tempting, but they also remove oils from your skin which can cause your skin to dry out. On top of that, many soaps can strip the oil from your skin and create the same effect. Ideally, you don’t want to remove the moisture from your skin, so pat drying is better than rubbing all the water off, and this is especially true of the face, and if your skin does feel dry, applying a moisturizer can be a great way to prevent unnecessary damage.

Disclaimer: We are unable to guarantee any result, even though most of our patients do see success. The results of our services will vary greatly to each patient’s level of commitment and compliance with the program.

dermatologist palo alto

Weight Loss and Skin Removal

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Weight Loss and Skin Removal

Skin removal by surgery began in Brazil and France over 40 years ago, but the surgery was fraught with complications. Those who had put in the effort to lose weight and make themselves look better suddenly had a second problem to deal with: what to do with all that extra skin? While surgical procedures for the removal of excess skin have gotten a lot better over the years, a lot of folks still yearn for the possibility of a non-surgical solution to skin removal.

“Unfortunately, that doesn’t exist as of yet,” says one dermatologist from San Francisco. “People ask us about other procedures like CoolSculpting but unfortunately the excess skin must be removed surgically by cutting it off and then reattaching the site where the removed skin once was. Where medical science has advanced in this area is with the treatment of the scarring that inevitably results from that kind of a procedure. We are now really good at getting rid of scars left behind, so the results are significantly better than they were 40 years ago. The rate of success is much higher and the results are much better.”

For those who have gotten gastric bypass surgery or through diet and exercise have lost a great deal of weight, the effort was worth it.

“In terms of the scarring there are a number of different methods for removing scars, but the most popular method is laser surgery,” he continued. “And this is a relatively recent development as well. Laser surgery was once only useful on very superficial forms of scarring, but now we can get in there and get rid of deeper scars as well. The latest equipment can remove scars that are 4 mm deep into the skin. The general process is aimed at destroying the scar tissue and allowing new collagen to regrow. That’s only if the scar forms in an unsightly way. The idea is to keep the scarring to a minimum.”

For those who are wondering if going through the process of losing all that weight is worth it, the answer is that it most definitely is.

“Obesity is a major problem for Americans, and there are a lot of components involved in that, including some you can’t control like genetics,” he said. “But most of the work we do nowadays is sedentary. We sit in front of computers and at desks all day. Then we go home and sit on the couch. All that sitting around isn’t healthy. So there’s a lot of folks interested in weight loss, and diets can help, and where they fall short, there’s gastric bypass surgery.”

Disclaimer: We are unable to guarantee any result, even though most of our patients do see success. The results of our services will vary greatly to each patient’s level of commitment and compliance with the program.

dermatologist san francisco

Treatment Options for Varicose Veins

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Treatment Options for Varicose Veins

With modern treatment options for varicose veins becoming less and less invasive, more and more individuals are seeking out their options for managing what has become a very manageable condition.

“Well the first thing we want to do is take a look at the individual patient and determine if their lifestyle is impacting their veins and to what extent it’s doing so,” says one dermatologist from Cameron Park. “Exercise, losing weight, avoiding tighter fitting clothes, and avoiding long periods of sitting or standing are all going to be things that we look at. On top of that, compression stockings make it easier for the veins to transmit blood, so sometimes they can be of help too. When that fails, there are other options we can look at.”

“Patients should be aware that each of these procedures involve the collapsing or blocking off of the veins themselves, so being in good health heartwise is going to be a prerequisite for consideration.”

#1. Sclerotherapy

The idea behind sclerotherapy is to collapse the vein by allowing the blood inside it to clot and close. The procedure has been around since the 1930s and is used for the purpose of treating varicose or spider veins. For obvious reasons there are considerable restrictions on a procedure like this, and in the case of sclerotherapy, size does matter. Smaller veins are going to be better candidates for this procedure, and restrictions on ideal candidates may take some patients off the table. For instance, those who have had a blood clot before may not be eligible. Sclerotherapy involves the injection of a solution that irritates the vein and causes it to scar and thus close. For larger veins there is a newer technique that involves sealing the vein with a foam.

#2. Laser Surgeries

Laser surgeries can also be used for generally the same purpose and function as sclerotherapy. The idea is the same, but this time lasers are used to close off the vein as opposed to an injectable solution. The procedure works well on smaller veins.

#3. Catheter Assisted Laser Surgery

For larger veins, this is the preferred treatment. It involves the insertion of a catheter into the vein. The tip of the catheter is heated using a laser and then removed, thus collapsing the vein.

“The other methods that are available to us tend to be a bit more invasive,” he said. “We obviously prefer to work with the least invasive surgeries first and then move our way from there.”

Disclaimer: We are unable to guarantee any result, even though most of our patients do see success. The results of our services will vary greatly to each patient’s level of commitment and compliance with the program.

dermatologist Cameron Park


 
 

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