Dermatologist Insight into the Top Causes of Skin Cancers and Treatments | Southlake, TX

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Cancer is a word nobody wants to get. It attacks and destroys organs and normal body function. What a lot of people need to understand is that your skin is an organ and that it is easily susceptible to damage from outside forces. Cancer of the skin is the most common type of cancer in the United States, but it is a lot easier to treat and cure than most known cancers. This means your dermatologist can help you understand what available prevention measures and treatments are out there but first we should know what exactly can contribute to your risk.

 

What type of skin cancers are there?

There are two main types of skin cancer that your dermatologist may tell you about. The majority fall under the nonmelanoma label. Those are then broken out into basal cells and squamous cell cancers. Basal cells you may notice start forming with unusual skin growths or changing long term skin growths. You may notice these by having open sores that don’t heal or come back after originally healing. It can also show as a patch of skin changing color. It can also look more like a pimple and leave a scar like impression.

Squamous cell cancers affect the layers of skin underneath your top dermal layer. You may notice that your skin starts shrivelling up and should be looked at by your dermatologist. The more dangerous skin cancer is melanoma. It is very aggressive and can get out of control if not taken care of. You will notice that your skin starts changing color as the melanocytes in your skin start over or under producing melanin, which is used to determine your skin color, and can spread to other parts of your skin and body. They can form dark tumours and can develop anywhere on your body, no matter your natural skin tone.

 

What causes skin cancers?

Your dermatologist will probably tell you one thing to answer that question, and that’s ultraviolet light and radiation. This spectrum of light can damage your skin causing it to not heal properly and lead to skin cancers or growths. As stated before anybody can get skin cancers but the darker your natural skin cancer is the less likely it is to occur. Natural Ultraviolet radiation comes from sunlight exposure. This is what most of us think about when we get sunburned. In fact getting sunburned a lot is an indicator that you are more likely to get skin cancers. Having lighter colored eyes and hair also increases the risk of skin cancers.

The warm climate of the Southlake, TX area does not help with reducing occurrences of skin cancer. With warmer climates and more sunny days you’re more likely to be over exposed to ultraviolet radiation. Ironically up in the mountains or other high elevation areas also can increase your risk of skin cancer as there is less atmosphere to filter out the damaging ultraviolet radiation. The final natural defense against skin cancer is age. As you age the ability of your body to repair damage to it decreases and that includes your skin. Reducing your exposure as you age will reduce your risk.

Some more unique ways that skin cancer can be caused is if you or your family has a history of skin cancer. If you’ve had melanoma or nonmelanoma cancers in the past you are at an increased risk of it coming back. If you have parents or siblings that have had skin cancer then the odds are that you are at an elevated risk. Gender can also play a role. Men are more likely to get nonmelanoma skin cancers than women, but women under fifty are more likely to have melanoma than men. Your dermatologist should be able to help you understand your risk.

 

Is there anything but the sun that can cause skin cancer?

If you work with dangerous materials such as radioactive materials, arsenic, or just have increased radiation exposure at your job you increase your risk of skin cancers. Another includes tanning beds. There are a lot of tanning places in Southlake, TX and your dermatologist will probably tell you to not use tanning beds. They simulate the effects of the sun to give you a tan, or burn in some cases, but they are not filtered by the environment like normal sun exposure, meaning it is more difficult for your skin to heal.

 

What treatments are available?

There are many ways your dermatologist can work with you to treat skin cancer once it is found. You must have an open mind and will likely have to go through a long list of tests to ensure that you are on the right path for treatment. These tests can include a normal body examination or doing a skin biopsy. This requires the dermatologist to remove a small section of suspicious looking skin and have it tested by the lab to see if it has cancerous cells in it. From there the extent of the damage will likely be given a stage of harm and spread. These will set a baseline to ensure the cancer doesn’t spread to other parts of your body.

Some common ways to remove cancerous cells include more traditional surgeries that will cut cancerous tissues out, leaving the healthy skin remaining. A more advanced surgery style is Mohs surgery that removes the skin layer by layer to ensure healthy tissue remains and cancerous tissue is removed. If it is caught early enough your dermatologist may try freezing or cryotherapy to remove sections of cancerous skin, as this is less invasive. In extreme cases radiation therapy and chemotherapy may be used like more traditional cancer treatments. These will target the section or cells that have issues

 

If you’re in need of a dermatologist in the Southlake, TX area to check your skin to ensure your body is cancer free the staff at Compassion Dermatology is there for you. Doctor Holly DeBuys and her staff will help you ensure you are treated well and give you a thorough diagnostic and treatment for any of your dermatology needs.


Dermatologist and the Connection Between Dermatology and Autoimmune Illness | Southlake, TX

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Dermatologists are not always the first medical professionals that come to mind when we think of autoimmune diseases. Perhaps that line of thinking should be altered. They have a very important role in diagnosing autoimmune illnesses, and they’re often the first medical professionals to notice potential warning signs.

What Are Autoimmune Illnesses?

Many autoimmune illnesses affect the skin, and the skin is frequently the first organ to show symptoms. Approximately 5% of the population is affected by an autoimmune illness. These illnesses are more common in women, and people with a family history are at higher risk of developing an autoimmune illness themselves.

Diseases are characterized as ‘autoimmune’ when they are caused by the immune responses that should protect our bodies from illness and heal injuries. These immune responses overreact and target healthy skin, connective tissues, and organs.

Autoimmune Skin Disorders

Dermatologists in Southlake, TX, and the rest of the nation, are often the first doctors to identify and manage individual cases of autoimmune skin disorders including, dermatitis herpetiformis, pemphigoid, pemphigus, and vasculitis.

Autoimmune diseases affecting connective tissue include lupus erythematosus, dermatomyositis, and scleroderma. Symptoms present in different ways for each person. Common symptoms include rashes, sensitivity to sunlight, sores around the mouth, hair loss, and changes in the nails.

Sometimes people with these illnesses only develop symptoms affecting the skin, while others have symptoms affecting internal organs as well. Skin changes almost always occur first.

Dermatologists perform comprehensive skin examinations to find early signs and symptoms of autoimmune connective tissue diseases. Laboratory tests and skin biopsies help confirm diagnosis and find signs of problems with internal organs.

Rheumatoid diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, can also affect connective tissue. A common blood test detects an autoantibody called the rheumatoid factor. This test is very important because a tentative correlation exists between levels of the rheumatoid factor in blood and severity of the condition. A positive test provides a warning of potential systemic involvement or complications.

Autoimmune Blistering Diseases

Autoimmune blistering skin diseases occur when the immune system attacks proteins in the skin that hold layers of skin together. Painful blisters form on the skin and mucous membranes when those proteins are damaged or depleted. A dermatologist can usually differentiate between blisters caused by burns or injuries and blisters signifying autoimmune disease in a relatively short time.

Autoimmune blisters occur over larger areas of the body and heal much more slowly than blisters resulting from burns and injuries. Both types may cause scarring, but scarring is more extensive with autoimmune blisters.

Autoimmune blistering diseases occur in men and women equally and usually appear after age 50, although they can occur in people of all ages.

Autoimmune blistering skin diseases include pemphigus, pemphigoid, IgA-mediated bullous dermatoses, and epidermolysis bullosa acquista. These diseases often present with very similar symptoms, but there are some differences a dermatologist recognizes.

Symptoms occur on different areas of the body and manifest in different ways according to each disorder. Pemphigus causes erosion and sores in the mouth, throat, nose, eyes, scalp, or genitals. Pemphigoid is an umbrella term for several disorders that cause fluid-filled blisters, erosions, and sores on the skin and mucous membranes.

IgA-mediated bullous dermatoses also includes a group of disorders that causes blisters on the skin and mucous membranes. Epidermolysis bullosa acquista causes blisters too, but skin also becomes noticeably more fragile and loses elasticity.

Other symptoms of these illnesses include mouth pain, difficulty breathing, difficulty swallowing, bleeding in the digestive tract, and problems with vision. Treatment is a combination of corticosteroids, anti-inflammatory medications, and immuno-suppressing drugs.

Dermatologists diagnose blistering autoimmune diseases with a complete evaluation. It begins with a physical exam, review of personal and family medical history, and a discussion of symptoms.

Several diagnostic tests are used to support, confirm, or dismiss a diagnosis. Blood draws generally check for disease- specific autoantibodies. In the case of blistering diseases, the tests look for immune proteins in the skin or proteins that attack the skin.

A dermatologist performs a skin biopsy by removing a small sample of affected skin and examining it under a microscope. Direct immunofluorescence is performed on a small sample of unaffected healthy skin to identify a person’s normal immune proteins. Determining the healthy state of a person’s skin helps understand disease progression.

Treatment

Medical teams treating autoimmune illnesses often include a dermatologist, several doctors in other fields, and physical or occupational therapists. A team of professionals in different fields is valuable because these illnesses can cause symptoms affecting many different parts of the body.

Medications are used to manage symptoms and treat the underlying causes. Doctors monitor symptoms, medication side effects, and systemic manifestations to determine the most effective combination of medication and interventions.

It is important to note that most autoimmune disorders are chronic conditions. Remission can last anywhere from days to years, but autoimmune disorders can not actually be cured through medical science yet.

Topical ointments, creams, and lotions are common treatments. Some dermatologists recommend light therapy to relieve rashes and itching. Laser treatment is a fairly new procedure. They uses a highly-targeted medical laser to address affected areas on the skin.

Vitamins are a staple of treatment regimes because they help the body fight the underlying autoimmune condition. Extreme cases of scleroderma may be treated with surgical amputation or transplants.

The causes of autoimmune blistering diseases are not well understood and usually have a genetic component, but certain factors can cause outbreaks and worsen symptoms. Common triggers include specific foods, medications for high blood pressure or diabetes, antibiotics, and exposure to ultraviolet light.

The field of dermatology is much, much more than cosmetic procedures. It is a vital component of the complex health care infrastructure that helps us live healthy, happy lives. Make sure to schedule an appointment with Compassion Dermatology in Southlake, TX, even if you feel fine. Early diagnosis is beneficial and contributes to positive treatment outcomes for any autoimmune disorder, and most medical conditions in general.


What Is Acne and How To Treat It? Dermatology Answers | Alliance Keller Area

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Acne is one of those things you may have been dealing with since your youth and may or may not have gone away. Maybe you need some dermatology help with it or just want to know more about acne so you’ll be more educated to help yourself in the future. Acne isn’t something that should be considered a youth only problem or a face only problem. It can cause bigger issues for those who suffer from it.

What Causes Acne?

Acne can be caused by a variety of issues, and based on that can be difficult to pinpoint. The American Academy of Dermatology states that it is actually the most common skin condition Americans face but it is not considered life threatening. Acne forms when your pores are blocked by oils, bacteria, dirt, or dead skin. It’s not something that happens necessarily because the person affected by it isn’t clean, but clogged pores are the basis of the issue.

What Are the Symptoms of Acne?

The most obvious one is a series of pimples or zits on a section of skin. It’s important to remember that acne is considered to be the series or repetitive instance in the same locations on a person’s body. Acne can also sometimes be painful, especially when it’s severe as the pores and nerve endings near them swell closer together. Acne is not considered life-threatening but it can affect mental health. After it clears up there is a chance of scarring that will require excess treatment.

What Types of Pimples Contribute to Acne?

Most dermatology experts will explain to you the difference between these but you may only know acne as blackheads and whiteheads. They are both the same type of pimple called comedones. The color is based on whether they are exposed to oxygen on the surface of your skin. If they are black then they are open at the surface, if they are white they are closed at the surface. Another type of skin lesions associated with acne include pustules, which are small and red filled with pus. More still are papules which are small, raised, red bumps that can include infecting the deeper hair follicles as well as pores. Nodules are solid lumps that are generally associated with pain. Finally cysts are large lumps containing pus and are generally painful.

Where Does Acne Form?

While a general answer to this can be “anywhere on the body” the most common locations are where more active hair follicles and oil glands are. These areas of the body can include your forehead, face, chest, shoulders, and upper back. These regions are the most susceptible to acne because there are higher concentrations of oil glands than the rest of the body. While these may not be the only places acne can appear your dermatology expert can guide you in the right direction to ensure it does not spread or is not able to spread to other parts of your body.

Who Can Officially Diagnose Acne?

Generally a dermatology expert can give you an official diagnosis and treatment plan. Consult with your doctor in the Alliance Keller area and see if going to a dermatologist is the best course of action for you.

What Treatments May Be Recommended?

First off your dermatology experts may give you specific steps of self care as a first step. This is the easiest way to see if it is a light issue or if more may need to be done. From that they may go over other options in their arsenal like medication. Some common medication compounds include benzoyl peroxide which dries out pores and is an anti-bacterial, sulfur compounds which can help dry the surface of the skin, resorcinol which is used to remove dead skin cells, and salicylic acid which help keep pores clean.

These compounds can be found in many varieties of treatments. Your dermatology expert may recommend different ones based on their usage and your severity. For example oral and topical antibiotics to reduce inflammation are sometimes used in short term trials. You don’t want to be on antibiotics for too long however as you may have a decreased ability to fight infections later on. Topical creams are some of the most common ways that are used to treat acne and may require a prescription from your dermatologist. These generally work for a mass amount of cases and are where most treatments end.

For special cases other medications or treatments may be selected. If you’re a female with acne based on hormonal imbalances you may be given a hormone regulator to decrease skin oil production or be put on birth control to regulate the hormones. More extreme treatments for every person with acne may include photodynamic therapy that uses lasers to reduce bacteria and oil. Chemical peels can also be used, these are generally applied by your dermatologist and remove the top layers of your skin to clear up dead skin cells. Another process is dermabrasion which is a fast spinning, rotating brush used to remove layers of your skin.

What Does Finishing Treatment Look Like?

Most people see success when following a skin clearing plan as prescribed by their dermatologist. It may be done in as little as six weeks. If the problems you have persist or come back after they are cleared you may be prescribed a different regiment or offered an at-home kit that will keep you normal. If your acne was severe enough your dermatologist may present you with options that will help reduce the visibility of acne scarring and make sure your skin pigmentation does not vary because of it.

These items can all be discussed with your dermatology experts at Compassion Dermatology in Southlake, TX. They cover the Alliance Keller area and will answer your questions about your specific dermatologic needs. Visit them at Compassion Dermatology to learn more and get in contact with their Dr. Holly DeBuys, and her staff.


The Best Dermatology Procedures From Your Local Dermatologist | Keller, TX

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If you have ever wondered what a dermatologist can do for you we are here to answer that today. There are many options available to you and it can depend on the area and the dermatologist. Thankfully the Compassion Dermatology Center helps those in Keller, TX with that. These options are more than just getting a face mask or buying a cream from the counter. Seeing a quality dermatologist means you will get many options to fit your needs and budget.

Starting with the basics everyone should get an evaluation. These evaluations are generally literally from head to toe and look over things like moles, changes in skin pigment, talk about aesthetic issues you may have with questions about, and even check your hair and nails. Remember that you won’t know for sure what they can help with until you complete your evaluation.

The basic care for cosmetic services is generally what dermatologists are known for by the public. These items are your creams, serums, masks, or other topical products that you can use yourself or have applied on site. Some other options available include things like targeted botox injections or minor outpatient surgery. This may include blu light treatment to help kill acne bacteria. That procedure is a gradual one that takes about fifteen minutes at a time for a set of appointments to help clear your skin.

If you’re visiting your dermatologist for a known medical issue with your skin surgical procedures should be provided by the facility. They can help with identified cancerous and precancerous skin problems, melanoma, jaundice, or moles that have turned dysplastic, meaning there is abnormal growth. Your doctor should have consulted with your dermatologist about what they believe needs to be done and they can work together to get a correct plan for you.

Other procedures done at the office of your dermatologist may include things like microneedling with a look at skin rejuvenation. This process is used to treat the signs of aging and improve your skin appearance. This essentially triggers what they call “micro injuries” that stimulate your body’s injury response leading to new growth of skin in those areas. This procedure is a good step if you are unsure about outright botox or cosmetic surgery as this can look more natural with less medication or side effects. This isn’t to say those items are out of the question but this less intensive step may do enough so you don’t have to take that next step.

Another microneedle procedure they may use is an injection of platelet rich plasma, or PRP. Taking the next step here can accelerate the natural injury response mentioned previously with the addition of plasma from your own body. To get the platelet rich plasma they generally will take a blood sample and run it through a centrifuge to remove the red blood cells. This separation leaves you with the PRP that will be put back into your micro injections. Using platelet rich plasma is a more safe option compared to plastic surgery or outside drugs because it’s your own blood being reworked. If you don’t want to go straight to botox this is a great stepping stone to see how effective your body’s natural systems are still working for you.

Another use of PRP is for hair loss. Most people who start going bald or notice thinning hair may not think that their dermatologist can take care of their problem. By injecting the scalp with those platelet rich plasmas your hair follicles get a jump start and have been shown to improve hair health. While this is a relatively new procedure for the industry it shows a lot of promise and going forward could be one of the go to hair loss treatments in the medical world. Why would you pay for implants if you could just use your own hair.

A program that your dermatologist can use to help remove fat in your abdomen is something called SculpSure. What it does is use laser treatment on the sides of your abdomen to help remove fat in your stomach area permanently. This is actually a procedure that has been cleared by the FDA and is non-invasive. It takes less than half an hour to complete a SculpSure procedure and the results can last a lifetime. Check with your doctor and see who provides this service.

Another procedure that is a very effective option at improving your skin health is something called a HydraFacial. The HydraFacial MD® Treatment can work on many common problems that may be affecting you including your skin texture including oily skin. It can also work on correcting hyper pigmentation issues to give yourself a more even skin tone. It is also able to assist in correcting issues with the signs of aging including improving the firmness and elasticity of your skin. This procedure is a process that focuses on cosmetic issues but also has actual medical uses.

A skin cooling process called Icon is something that can fix many aesthetic issues you and your doctor may have discussed and works with the melanin in your skin. Using the Skintel┬« Melanin Reader it targets a small section of your skin near where the treatment is going to be applied and gives the data to your doctor to input so the Icon system can do it’s work. When those results come back the cooling system of the Icon Aesthetic System can treat issues such as acne scars, stretch marks, wrinkles, blood vessel visibility, surgery scars, and actually be used to permanently reduce unwanted hair on your body.

Getting a dermatologist in Keller, TX shouldn’t be hard. Thankfully the friendly staff at Compassion Dermatology are here for you. Located in nearby Southlake Doctor DeBuys and her staff do their best to keep you comfortable and on task to ensure your plan best fits you. Visit them at Compassion Dermatology to see what they offer and what is available.