Diseases of the Skin, Hair, and Nails
Comprehensive Dermatology Care
The skin is important to us in many ways. It is the largest and most visible organ in the body, with an average surface area of about two square yards. It provides an essential barrier, separating the insides of the body from the outside world. The skin helps the body function to keep us alive by regulating body temperature, protecting our bodies from bacteria and viruses, giving us the sensation of touch and aiding in our metabolism. Hair and nails are actually a modified form of skin and serve as additional protection for the outside of our bodies.
Maintaining healthy skin, hair and nails is essential to our overall good health. Diseases affecting the skin happen for a variety of reasons including sun exposure, hormones, genetics and allergies. At Midwest Dermatology Clinic, we treat all diseases of the skin hair and nails. If you experience any changes or abnormalities of your skin, hair and nails, make an appointment at Midwest Dermatology Clinic for treatment from experienced specialists.
Many new treatments are available for common skin diseases. For the latest news on treating the following skin conditions, click on the name below:
Treatment Options to Clear Up the Problem
Waiting for acne to disappear or simply hoping to "outgrow it" is no solution to the problem. In fact, leaving the problem unchecked can lead to permanent scarring of the skin. The physicians at Midwest Dermatology Clinic can effectively control acne outbreaks and prevent its recurrence through a combination of medications and other specialized therapies.
Why We Get Acne
Acne is a skin condition that occurs when oil, bacteria and skin cells clog a hair follicle. It may appear in the form of a blackhead or white head. When these clogged pores inflame and rupture, they appear as "pimples" which are often seen on the face, neck and shoulder area. Sometimes acne develops into a more painful, severe form called cystic acne. Inflamed red nodules develop, often leaving deep scars.
Because everyone's skin is different, Midwest Dermatology Clinic physicians use a combination of treatments to design a regimen suited to your needs. Treatments prescribed are usually chosen from this list:
- Benzoyl Peroxide. creams and gels which dry up pores and kill surface bacteria.
- Topical Antibiotics. applied as a clear solution on the skin to dry its surface and fight bacteria.
- Retin-A products. which loosen and force blackheads to the surface.
- Differin. a vitamin D derivative that gently unclogs pores to clear blemishes and keeps them clear, preventing new breakouts.
- Oral antibiotics. such as tetracyline, erythromycin, minocycline and doxyclycline, which are used to reduce bacteria in skin follicles in cases of moderate to severe acne.
- Accutane. used in more severe acne and when acne is unresponsive to other treatments. Accutane therapy usually results in complete clearing of acne after a six-month course of treatment. Often, no further acne therapy is necessary. A derivative of Vitamin A, Accutane is the strongest acne medications available.
With modern advances, acne can be a thing of the past.
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- Comedone extraction. uses a special tool to gently remove whiteheads and blackheads and open clogged pores.
- Liquid Nitrogen spray. reduces redness and inflammation of acne cysts and lightly peels the skin's surface to open clogged pores.
- Intralesional steroids. injected directly into large cystic lesions to reduce pain, inflammation and redness on these hard to treat lesions.
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Take Control of the Itch
From infants to adolescents and adults, eczema (atopic dermatitis) is one skin condition that knows no age limits. It can occur on the face, scalp or any part of the body. Symptoms vary and can include redness, blistering, oozing, scaling, crusting or thickened skin. Whenever it strikes, it leaves one common symptom - an intense itch. The physicians at Midwest Dermatology Clinic can provide the information and treatments that can help you to find relief from itching and outbreaks.
Good News For Children
While eczema can occur at any age, it is most common in infants to young adults. For these patients, there's good news. Babies and children typically outgrow the problem within a few years. Topical steroids, prescribed by your physician, can help control the itching and outbreaks until time solves the problem. And new topical medications such as Elidel and Protopic come in strengths suitable for children as young as two.
Treatment For Adults
Unfortunately, about 60% of patients will retain some degree of eczema beyond age 25. Yet even these patients can find relief. While eczema cannot be cured by any treatment, the symptoms of dry, red, itchy skin can be well controlled. To do this, physicians at Midwest Dermatology Clinic use a three-step approach:
Living with eczema can be challenging. But it can be controlled with proper medical care.
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- Manage the dryness. We recommend moisturizing soaps and bath oils that will not irritate your dry, sensitive skin, followed with unscented moisturizers or hand creams to lock in water.
- Manage the itch. Prescription ointments and creams from a dermatologist can take the itch and redness away. Topical steroids are commonly prescribed. Protopic and Elidel are recent breakthroughs, the first new treatment for eczema in 40 years. They deliver effective results without the use of steroids.
- Manage your skin. Don't scratch if you can help it. Avoid hot water and strong soaps. Stay away from products with fragrances that may irritate the skin. And find a gentle detergent for your clothes. These are just some of the recommendations we can make, depending on the location and severity of your eczema, to help prevent aggravating outbreaks.
To learn how to get control of your eczema, schedule a consultation
with a Midwest Dermatology Clinic physician.
Relief That's Right For You
Psoriasis is an abnormality in the white blood cells that causes the acceleration of skin cell growth and shedding. This results in inflammation, thickening, scales and lesions on the skin. Psoriasis can occur on nearly any part of the face, body and even nails. No one knows what causes psoriasis and there is no cure, but the physicians at Midwest Dermatology Clinic can provide effective treatments that:
How Is It Treated?
- Help to reduce inflammation, swelling and itching.
- Slow the rapid skin cell division that causes outbreaks.
- Prevent the spread of psoriasis to other parts of the body.
- Fit with your lifestyle and medication preferences.
Depending on the location of your psoriasis and its severity, your physician may recommend:
Specialized PUVA Treatment
- Topical Medications. Lotions, creams, ointments and gels control psoriasis on the body.
- Medicated Shampoos and Solutions. Provide relief of psoriasis on the scalp.
- Oral Medications. Derived from Vitamin A, Tegison and Soriatane control moderate to severe psoriasis.
- New Biologic drugs. The newest advance in psoriasis treatment work to stop psoriasis in the immune system, preventing the development of the disease.
- Light therapy. Sunlight, ultraviolet light or PUVA.
- A combination of the above.
PUVA (the combination of light and medication) requires highly specialized experience and training. Utilizing specially constructed in-office PUVA units, Midwest Dermatology Clinic physicians provide this hard-to-find treatment at the Doctors Building and Norfolk locations.
The release of three new psoriasis treatments presents some exciting new options - especially for psoriasis that has become resistant to other treatments. TAZORAC gel requires once-a-day topical application to effectively control psoriasis on most parts of the body. DOVONEX is now available in a solution to control scalp psoriasis without leaving a sticky or greasy coating on hair. SORIATANE oral medication helps to reduce outbreaks and lessen their severity.
The body's immune system sets in motion triggers that cause inflammation and excess production of skin cells. Biologics stop this action at varying stages, to prevent the development of psoriasis. Stelara and Humira are two of the newest FDA approved biologics proven to bring significant relief to adults with moderate to severe psoriasis.
- Stelara. Targets two specific proteins that are present in psoriasis placque (IL-12 and IL-23). The treatment prevents these proteins from attaching to cells, which results in slowing down the over production of skin cells. Stelara administered by your physician in the office. Injected through a tiny needle, Stelara is given in four doses a year after two initial starter doses.
- Humira. Blocks a chemical "messenger" in the immune system known as tumor necrosis factor (TNF). When a person has too much TNF in their system, it triggers an inflammatory response that causes inflammation and sets the overproduction of skin cells in motion. Patients inject a small dose of Humira under the skin in the privacy of their home, usually every other week. Patients with psoriatic arthritis can expect to see improvement in placque lesions and inflammation of the skin, as well as slowing down the progression of joint involvement.
All biologics can be used with other treatments such as phototherapy or topicals.
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to find out how Midwest Dermatology Clinic can provide an effective treatment to control psoriasis for you.
Don't Face It Alone
Rosacea is a little known skin disease affecting a growing number of people. Sometimes mistaken for adult acne, rosacea is characterized by redness and pimples on the nose, cheeks, chin and forehead. Sometimes it comes and goes responding to certain triggers such as exercise, heat, stress, alcohol, and spicy foods. Other times, the embarrassing redness is persistent.
Don't Let Rosacea Progress - Seek Treatment Right Away
Without treatment, some people develop knobby bumps on the nose and cheeks and the disease can cause the face and eyes to look swollen. Tiny red veins that look like spider webs may appear. The physicians of Midwest Dermatology Clinic can prescribe treatment to keep all of these symptoms under control.
- Antibiotics. Oral or topical antibiotics may be prescribed to treat the redness and pimples most often found in rosacea.
- Metrogel. A powerful topical agent containing metronidazole in a water based gel which aids in the absorbtion of the medicine. Skin stays smooth and soft while the symptoms of rosacea disappear.
- Laser surgery. Newest generation laser technology aids in the removal of tiny red blood vessels that often appear with rosacea. The laser light passes harmlessly through the outer skin, targeting and bursting the red blood vessel, which is absorbed by the body. After healing, the color returns to normal.
If you see signs of rosacea, it's time to be seen by a doctor. At Midwest Dermatology Clinic, we are ready to provide the treatment you need.
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Swift Action Is Best
Rough and unsightly, warts can appear on any part of the body and on patients of all ages. Warts are caused by a virus and if left untreated, can spread to other areas or to other people. That's why the physicians at Midwest Dermatology Clinic recommend swift action.
Warts are caused by viruses that are present everywhere. Weakness in our immune system allows the virus to take hold when the virus touches a part of the skin that is broken. Therefore, they are most common on the hand and fingers, elbows, knees and the bottom of the feet.
Types Of Warts
There are several types of warts. The type of wart usually depends on the area of the body on which it is found.
Eliminating the Problem
- Hand Warts. This type of wart is very common and occurs around the nails, fingers and on the back of the hand.
- Plantar Warts. Typically found on the soles, these warts lie below the skin's surface and often form a cluster the size of a quarter or larger.
- Flat Warts. These warts grow in groups of 20 to 100 and can occur anywhere on the face and body.
While many warts will go away on their own, it takes time, often several months to a number of years. Patients are advised to take action against the warts to prevent growing or spreading. There are a variety of treatments available to effectively eliminate warts. The type of treatment recommended will depend on the type of wart and the area of the body on which it occurs.
- CO2 Laser. This laser therapy is the most effective method of treating difficult or recurring warts. It is also used for plantar warts. The CO2 laser seals nerve endings as it excises the wart. This results in a less painful and more effective recovery.
- Electrodesiccation. A surgical removal technique which uses a mild electric current to "burn" the wart from the surface of the skin. A tool known as a curette may then be used to scrape away underlying tissue affected by the virus.
- Liquid Nitrogen. Cryotherapy often referred to as "freezing" the wart. A fine spray of very cold liquid nitrogen is applied directly to the wart. Multiple treatments may be necessary to remove the wart on the surface and destroy the virus.
- Chemical treatment. Applied in the office, a special solution containing wart-fighting agents is applied and covered. As the chemical is absorbed, the warty skin and underlying virus are targeted, causing the wart to dry up and peel away. Multiple treatments may be necessary to eliminate the virus from the skin.
Because warts are caused by a virus that may remain under the skin, patients must continue to examine their skin, even after treatment. If new warts appear, immediate treatment is necessary to permanently eradicate the wart virus from the body.
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