Posts tagged #dermatology
Dermatology Arts' Dr. Casey Carlos, MD, PhD named Seattle Met Magazine 2019 Top Doctor

Congratulations to Dermatology Arts’ very own Dr. Casey Carlos for being voted “TOP DOCTOR” for the 2019 Seattle Met Magazine! Medical professionals in the Seattle metropolitan area nominated other medical professions in various specialties to be considered for the honor. Among dermatologists, Dr. Carlos was among the top vote recipients of the King, Snohomish, Kitsap, and Pierce Counties.

In 2018, Seattle Met asked Washington State licensed health care providers “If you or a loved one needed care, whom would you choose?” Responses considered years of experience, patient satisfaction, and more. The 14th annual list for 2019 asked similar questions and was recently published on seattlemet.com

Dr. Carlos went to medical school at the University of Pittsburgh, where she also received her PhD. After her training, she went on to be Chief Resident at the University of Pennsylvania, then residency program co-director at the University of California San Diego. Our team at Dermatology Arts was proud to welcome her in 2016, and now, we are even more proud to have her here as Top Doctor.

Remember the Eyes

Imagine going to the beach. In a large beach bag is everything that’s going to be needed. A towel, lunch for the day, a few snacks and drinks, and of course, sunscreen. Sunscreen is one of the most important ways to protect your skin. When going out in the sun for long periods of time, ensuring full coverage is usually the goal. Some areas can be missed, however, which can result in sun damage.

Dermatologists also recommend an everyday SPF moisturizer for the face. A recent article from Reuters Health highlights a study showing it can be even more difficult to get full coverage. In the study, participants who were applying SPF sunscreen covered their entire face more often than those who were applying an SPF moisturizer (often missing the eyelids). While it is not yet known why the SPF moisturizer participants covered less of their face, it is a good reminder to thoroughly apply SPF moisturizer everyday. 

All in all, don’t forget the eyes, and any other areas exposed to daily sun like the hands, neck, and arms. If you don’t want leathery skin on your upper chest, apply an extra handful of sunscreen there during your daily routine! It’s important to apply and reapply!

Do the least you can do.

This past Sunday morning, perhaps as a small Father’s Day gift, my wife, Aditi, shared the Graduate English address by Lucila Takjerad at Harvard Commencement 2019. It had been forwarded to her from a lifelong friend in India. Before she showed me the video, Aditi narrated the story you are about to hear. With each advancing detail, Aditi’s eyes swelled with emotion; clearly Lucila’s words had resonated with Aditi.

As I subsequently watched the video, I understood that my wife and I live our lives moment by moment and action by action working to make small differences in the lives of the people around us. As a physician, I’m often humbled by the messages given to me by patients who seek my care. While I state that physicians are in the small group of people who regularly receive blessings from others, my patients—our patients—regularly touch our lives in many small ways which enrich our lives. Over the last few months, countless long time patients and many new ones have given us strength, endurance, and support. We “try harder” because of them.

Please take a few minutes to hear for yourselves the difference that small things can make in the lives of others.

My Child’s Skin is _________:

Pediatric skin issues are one of the more long term struggles parents can face. From diaper dermatitis to teenage acne, the skin can be difficult to navigate.

Acne, warts, and atopic dermatitis (eczema) are three common diagnoses in pediatric dermatology cared for at Dermatology Arts. As children are developing and changing, the pH of the skin changes, leading to different reactions to different environments and products.

Infants are especially prone to eczema, as their skin is still developing and is being exposed to many new products. Diaper dermatitis can be caused by a wide variety of things. Allergens, irritants, an overgrowth of yeast, atopic dermatitis, and bacterial infections are all possibilities.

With high exposure to shared facilities such as playgrounds and toys, warts are especially easy for young children to pick up. Contagious and uncomfortable, warts can be treated with cryotherapy, salicylic acid (like Compound-W), and, at times, tissue scraping. Another virus is called Molluscum Contagiosum, which as the name implies, is highly contagious. Children acquire this condition in two peaks, at ages five and fifteen, with swimming pools and water slides thought to play a role in the spread of the condition.

Acne has a wide variety of treatment methods. Most people have heard of Accutane, but not many know there are several highly, effective, safe, inexpensive steps before Accutane. These include Retin-A (tretinoin), oral and systemic antibiotics, and/or cleanser changes. Hormonal treatments can also be considered in younger females with cyclical acne flares.

How do dermatologists know which treatment is right for each child’s skin? Why do some treatments work better than others? Although these questions can be difficult to answer, Dermatology Arts takes pride in being thorough with not only adult care, but also with pediatric skin care.

What is Patch Testing?

If a red itchy rash has ever appeared after trying a new perfume or wearing latex gloves, it may have been caused by an allergic contact dermatitis--a fancy term for an allergic reaction on the skin caused by something in direct contact with the skin. Products or chemicals that cause allergic reactions are called contact allergens and are exactly what they sound like: an allergic reaction develops whenever it contacts the skin. It can be hard to determine which chemicals, products, or daily household items may be causing a rash. Even a small ingredient change in a detergent can trigger a reaction. To circumvent trial and error, and avoid getting more rashes, patch testing is helpful for determining common contact allergens.

In just one week, a tailored patch testing sequence can be developed, implemented, and reviewed. But, how does it work? What does a patch testing panel look like? In patch testing, small “stickers” with common allergen substances are uniformly placed on the back. After a few days, the patches are removed and specific markers are identified at each spot to determine if the test is positive or negative for an allergen. A positive result means the respective substance causes an allergic reaction and is an allergen, and a negative response means indicates the substance is does not.

To get started, patients interested in patch testing complete initial intake forms before the first visit with Dermatology Certified Nurse Practitioner Liz Schuringa, ARNP. Liz will review the procedure and any personal products (even ones used on occasion). At a separate visit, the patches will be applied and left on for 2 days. The patches are then removed at the third visit and the spots are observed after 3 days for any positive or negative result. This last visit consists of going over results and determining which products are allergens and which ones are not.

Most insurance companies cover patch testing, but may need confirmation to be sure. Insurance copays, are typically only required at the 1st and 4th visits. For scheduling, questions, or concerns please call the office at (425) 753-2918.

Do You Use Protection?

Did you know UV exposure is the most preventable risk factor for skin cancer? The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) recommends taking many precautions when going out in the sun. It’s important to minimize sun exposure and maximize protection. Enjoy a play on words in this video by the AAD

Summary:

  • Seek shade during times of peak sun rays

  • Wear protective clothing like hats and sunglasses. Pro-tip from Dermatology Arts: Use SPF shirts and shorts for water activities (for example. rash guards / swim shirts have a UPF / SPF equivalent)

  • Apply minimum SPF 30, broad spectrum, and water resistant sunscreen

  • Reapply sunscreen every hour on the hour when outside

Get your moles checked!

May is filled with holidays, new spring weather, and more! What many may not know is May is Melanoma and Skin Cancer Awareness Month. Melanoma is a more serious skin cancer than non-melanoma skin cancers squamous cell carcinoma and basal cell carcinoma. It can spread through your body, affect how long you live, and appear on parts of the body that have little sun exposure.

Those with a personal or family history of melanoma know it is important to get their skin checked regularly. Even first degree relatives since developing melanoma has a genetic component. Full body skin checks at Dermatology Arts can help evaluate spots you can’t see (on your back or between your toes), catch early signs of skin cancers, and even prevent melanoma from spreading to other parts of the body.

Knowing if a spot is concerning can be tricky. Many people have lots of moles, and it can be difficult to determine if any of them are changing. Having someone at home check hard to see places monthly can be helpful. See our post here for a few quick facts about Melanoma and enjoy a short video about checking loved ones’ spots!

Aging-related skin changes

Getting older is no one’s favorite subject. With a little help from this blog post, skin related changes can be a little less daunting.

Sun exposure is one of the leading causes of aging skin. Invisible sun rays damage the skin’s composition resulting in thinner skin, wrinkles, and age spots. Although genetics play a large role, there are still many affordable ways to keep the skin healthier and look younger.

Radiation from the sun causes abnormalities in the skin which can result in skin cancers. When your skin becomes tan or burns from the sun’s UV rays, subtle changes occur which can later cause the skin cancers basal cell and squamous cell carcinoma. While the short term change may be a beautiful skin tone, medical treatment and or surgery may be necessary in the long run.

Sunscreen. Sunscreen. Sunscreen. Sunscreen protection from the sun’s harmful effects prevents damage to skin cells and the sunscreen also acts as a moisturizer prolonging a youthful glow. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends wearing SPF 30 on the face, ears, neck, hands, and anywhere else that may be exposed to daily sun. Walking from building to building, through the car window (typically the side windows are not UV protected), and scattered rays on a cloudy day all contribute to aging skin.

Dark spots and wrinkles can also come from sun damage. While these are less harmful than skin cancers, their presence can be unsightly. Modern medicine and a good skin routine can lessen the appearance of aging skin. Moisturizing every day evens out the texture and skin tone, reducing the appearance of wrinkles and prevents dry and cracked skin. Products which contain retinoids also help renew the skin by promoting collagen production, and we can prescribe retinoids much stronger or more effective than ones available over the counter. For darker spots, other medications and treatments such as bleaching creams and cryotherapy lighten the darkened skin to improve symptoms.

Knowing how to care for the skin and when you need to see a physician can be difficult. Be on the lookout for more posts like this to learn a little more about dermatological care.

New publication by Dr. Casey Carlos, MD, PhD regarding Herpes-associated condition

Our very own Dr. Casey Carlos, MD, PhD has recently been published in the peer reviewed medical journal JAMA Dermatology (published by the American Medical Association).

Most of us have heard of herpes simplex virus (HSV) the cause of the common cold sore. However, not many know it can be associated with erythema multiforme (EM). Although herpes virus infection is common, many physicians and patients may not be aware of this rare dermatologic complication. As Dr. Carlos explains in this article, a thorough examination is vital for any diagnosis in order to to accurately diagnose and treat patients with herpes-associated erythema multiforme (HAEM).

Dr. Carlos’ extensive research background and many years of dermatology training have contributed to her excellent patient care through her ability to pinpoint diagnoses and create detailed and personalized treatment regimens. We are delighted by her contributions not only to her patients at the practice, but also to the advancement of medical understanding.