It’s Time to See the Dermatologist

Lifestyle

For whatever the reason many people try to avoid going to the doctor, no matter the specialty. We get it, it’s not at the top of your list of things you want to do, but there are some cases in which it is necessary to visit the doctor.  According to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), “Dermatologists diagnose and treat more than 3,000 different diseases”.

So when exactly should you be seeing the dermatologist? We’ve included some circumstances of when it would be in your best interest to seek the professional help of a dermatologist.

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New Port Wine Stain Treatment Option

A port wine stain is a benign birthmark that is a result of enlarged capillaries beneath the skin’s surface. Although typically harmless, port wine stains should nevertheless be examined and treated to prevent potential complications. The most common treatment method for port wine stains utilizes pulsed dye lasers. A newer option, which uses optimized pulsed light lasers, was recently tested on port wine stains and other vascular lesions. Is newer necessarily better?

Small Sample Group, But Promising Results

Sixteen patients between the ages of 11 and 71 with vascular lesions underwent treatment by the optimized pulsed light laser. Ten of those patients saw an improvement of at least 50 percent within one to four treatment sessions and two of them even experienced full improvement after just one treatment session. No serious complications were noted after optimized pulsed light laser treatment. What does this mean for treating port wine stains and other vascular lesions?

Not a Replacement – Another Option

While the optimized pulsed light laser has shown promising results, researchers are quick to point out that it is not a replacement for pulsed dye lasers. Instead, it will be another option, for those who do not see results from pulsed dye lasers. Before it is accepted as a widespread treatment option, the optimized pulsed light laser must be analyzed further.

Don’t Ignore that Birthmark! Contact Us Today!

If you have a birthmark, port wine stain or other abnormality on your skin, don’t assume that it’s “just a birthmark.” At Advanced Dermatology, PC, our board-certified dermatologists are experts at diagnosing and treating a wide range of skin conditions using the latest treatment methods. Contact us today for a skin evaluation and to learn your treatment options. Our conveniently located offices welcome patients from Queens, Long Island (Roslyn/Albertson, West Islip, Commack, East Setauket), New York City, Westchester County, Bergen County, NJ, Union County, NJ, and all surrounding areas.

Possible New Pediatric Hemangioma Eraser

A hemangioma is a red birthmark that may appear during infancy and typically dissolves within the first 5 to 10 years of life. They are usually benign; however, hemangiomas may be a great source of distress to parents and older children. Corticosteroids are commonly used for treating hemangiomas, with widely varying results. Another possibility, the beta blocker propranolol, has shown more consistent results in clinical trials. Could this be the ultimate hemangioma eraser?

Promising Initial Results

An early study has followed 40 children between the ages of 11 weeks and 5 years old, all of whom had hemangiomas either deep beneath the skin or in prominent areas such as around the eye. These children’s hemangiomas were either unresponsive to corticosteroids or were too advanced to benefit from corticosteroid treatment. The study included a group who received 3 daily doses of propranolol over 6-month period, as well as a group that received placebos in the same quantity and duration. 24 months later, hemangiomas that were treated with propranolol shrank by as much as 60 percent compared to the placebo group.

What Does This Mean?

Due to the small sample group, no formal conclusions can be drawn from this study. In addition, the wide age range makes it difficult to determine whether the hemangiomas in older children shrunk naturally or as a result of the propranolol. Based on these initial results, however, propranolol may be considered as the first line of treatment for hemangiomas. Larger studies are currently in process to more accurately determine the effects of propranolol.

Does Your Child Have Birthmarks? Get Them Evaluated!

Although birthmarks are often benign, they should nevertheless be evaluated. At Advanced Dermatology, PC, our board-certified dermatologists are expertly training in evaluating birthmarks and determining the appropriate course of action for each specific case. Contact us today to schedule an evaluation to ensure that your child’s birthmarks are indeed benign. Our ten conveniently located offices welcome patients from Queens, Long Island (Albertson, West Islip, Commack, East Setauket), New York City, Westchester County, Bergen County, NJ, Union County, NJ, and all surrounding areas.