Skin Conditions & Treatments

Below, you’ll find a list of common skin conditions we treat. Click on any condition you are interested in learning more about, or call us for an appointment to examine your skin.

Acne

Acne can affect people with any skin type – at any age. This condition occurs when hair follicles become clogged with oil and dead skin cells, and can range from mild acne with just a few red spots to more severe acne with hundreds of painful, solid red lumps covering the face, neck, chest, back, and shoulders.

But the good news is that effective treatments and technology are available to help treat and control acne.

At Dermatology Specialists, we offer a comprehensive range of treatment options to help our patients get their acne under control. Our mild acne treatments include oral antibiotics and topical creams, gels, and ointments with benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. For treating more severe acne, we offer mild acidic cleansers, chemical peels, microdermabrasion, light therapy, and stronger antibiotics.

In addition to being painful and embarrassing, acne can also cause scarring of the skin. Whether your scars are new or decades old, we can help diminish their appearance and improve your skin tone with procedures such as laser resurfacing, light therapy, dermabrasion, microdermabrasion, and soft fillers.

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Actinic Keratosis

If you’ve spent a great deal of time outdoors, you may have noticed rough, scaly patches or spots on your face, hands, forearms, neck, or scalp. These patches, called actinic keratosis or solar keratosis, are a precancerous skin condition. Fair-skinned people are particularly susceptible to actinic keratosis.

While these growths can take years to develop, they sometimes turn into skin cancer, which means early diagnosis and treatment is recommended. If the actinic keratosis changes, becomes more painful, increases in size or elevation, or begins to bleed, you should see a dermatologist as soon as possible.

At Dermatology Specialists, our physicians are experts at treating and diagnosing precancerous and cancerous skin conditions. We offer many options for removing growths, including cryosurgery, photodynamic therapy, surgical excision, curettage (scraping), topical medications, lasers, chemical peels, and dermabrasion.

Birthmarks

Most people are aware that birthmarks, or marks and splotches on the skin that become apparent at birth, are typically harmless. But when do birthmarks need to be treated? While some birthmarks fade or disappear with age, others can increase in size and darkness over time, which can make people feel self-conscious and affect their self-esteem. In a very limited number of cases, birthmarks occasionally need to be removed because they are growing too quickly, are growing on an internal organ, or are related to another medical condition.

Patients who are concerned about a birthmark for cosmetic or medical reasons should have an evaluation with a trained dermatologist. Dermatology Specialists provides several options for removing or reducing the appearance of birthmarks, including laser treatments and surgical removal.

Blisters

If a brand new pair of shoes has ever rubbed your skin the wrong way, you know that blisters can be truly uncomfortable. Circular, fluid-filled bumps on the skin, blisters can be caused by allergic reactions, infections, or (most commonly) friction or burns.

However, a blister can be treated by cleaning the area and covering it with a bandage. If a blister ruptures, it may become infected. If you have a blister that has increased warmth, redness, drainage, swelling, or pain – or if you notice red streaks around your blister – you should contact your Dermatology Specialists dermatologist. Our team can provide appropriate treatment to eliminate the infection and help your skin heal.

Cherry Angiomas

Cherry angiomas are harmless red or purple skin growths caused by a clustering of capillaries under the skin. They typically range in size from one to three millimeters across, but can become enlarged over time. Some may even become raised or rounded.

Because they are harmless, cherry angiomas usually don’t require treatment, but some patients may choose to remove them for cosmetic reasons or if they bleed too much. In certain rare cases, they may be indicators of another disorder. If you are concerned about a cherry angioma, our specialists can examine it and help determine how best to treat it.

Cold Sores

If you are affected by cold sores, or fever blisters, you know that they’re much more than a nuisance. These clusters of blisters appear on the lip and around the mouth and are both highly painful and very contagious.

Cold sores are caused by the herpes simplex virus and can be contracted by touching an infected person’s mouth or saliva. After appearing, blisters usually break open and then crust over before healing. They can last for a few days up to two weeks.

Our team can help reduce the discomfort and embarrassment of cold sores with topical treatments and medication to speed recovery time, relieve pain, and reduce the frequency of outbreaks.

Dry Skin

It’s no secret that our skin changes as we age. In addition to expected changes like wrinkles, aging skin also loses the ability to produce the oils that keep it moisturized. Dry skin symptoms include rough, scaly patches, tightness, and itchiness, especially on the lower legs, arms, hands and elbows.

For many people, dry skin can be treated with certain lifestyle changes, such as reducing the use of soaps and perfumes, taking cooler baths or showers, spending less time in hot or cold weather with low humidity levels, and applying moisturizer regularly. If your dry skin is persistent and severely itchy, it’s important to treat it because it can turn into eczema or dermatitis. At Dermatology Specialists, we can provide a range of options for treating your severely dry skin.

Eczema

Eczema, or atopic dermatitis, is a chronic skin condition that causes the skin to become dry, inflamed, itchy, and red. In more severe cases, skin may become scaly, chapped, or cracked, and develop small red bumps. Eczema flare-ups typically appear on the hands and feet, elbows, ankles, wrists, face, and neck.

In some cases, mild eczema can be controlled by avoiding triggers such as stress, low humidity environments, hot showers or baths, harsh cleansers and soaps, and allergens such as cigarette smoke, dust, pet dander, and certain foods. More severe cases, such as those covering large areas of the body, those accompanied by oozing sores, and those with evidence of infection may require medical treatment. Our team will work with you to develop a personalized treatment plan to help you best manage your eczema.

Fungal Nail Infections

A fungal nail infection is more than unpleasant and unsightly. Left untreated, it will spread deeper into the nail and possibly to other nails, causing your nails to change color, become thicker and even crumble or break away from the skin.

Whether your nail fungus occurs naturally (some forms are related to athlete’s foot), or you contract it from walking barefoot in a public place such as a pool or shower, there are several treatment methods available. If you’ve noticed small spots at the tip of your nails, contact us as soon as possible. Our team will examine your nails and recommend the correct treatment for your condition, which might range from topical treatments to surgical removal of the nail.

Melasma

Melasma is skin condition common to women (especially pregnant women, women who take oral contraceptives, or women who undergo hormone replacement therapy) that causes brown, tan, or gray discoloration on the cheekbones, forehead, nose, chin, or upper lip. It generally becomes worse with exposure to the sun. Typically, this discoloration will go away on its own a few months after a woman gives birth or changes her hormone intake.

We can help speed up the healing process on your melasma with topical medication and exfoliating treatments, including microdermabrasion, dermaplaning, chemical peels or laser resurfacing. Talk with one of our specialists today to determine the best treatment for you.

Moles

Most of the time, moles are simply spots on the skin that are a result of a cluster of pigmented cells. Over time, they may grow or become lighter or darker, particularly if exposed to the sun. While most moles are noncancerous and harmless, some moles have a risk of developing into melanoma, squamous cell carcinoma, or basal cell carcinoma.

If a mole has become painful, started to bleed or weep fluids, or has an uneven shape or color – or if it has recently changed in size, color or shape – you should ask your dermatologist to check it for cancerous cells. Some patients may also choose to have moles removed for cosmetic or comfort reasons, which can be accomplished easily on an outpatient basis.

A regular skin check by our skin specialists is a smart way to monitor any moles you may have and to catch skin cancer in its early stages.

Psoriasis

Psoriasis is a common skin condition that’s much more than a cosmetic problem: it’s a persistent, chronic autoimmune disease that causes cells to build up quickly on the skin, creating thick, discolored (white, silvery or red) patches of skin. These patches, called plaques, range in size and severity, but can become extremely itchy and tender. Very visible plaques can make patients feel self-conscious and affect quality of life as well.

The team at Dermatology Specialists provides a range of treatments for mild to severe psoriasis, and can recommend treatment based on the severity of your condition and the area of skin affected. While milder cases can be controlled with lotions and lifestyle changes, our specialists might also use topical steroids, oral medication, light therapy, or the excimer laser to treat more severe psoriasis.

Rashes

A rash is a generic term for an inflammation of the skin. Many rashes will go away on their own, but some are indicators of chronic skin conditions or allergies. When is a rash more than a rash?

Rashes are often caused by contact with an irritant, including poisonous plants, medications, insect bites, chemicals, and certain cosmetics or soaps. A rash that is accompanied by fever or shortness of breath, that spreads to other parts of the body, or that lasts for longer than two weeks (or recurs in the same place) may be an indication of a serious skin condition, allergy, or infection, and should be evaluated by a specialist.

When you’re concerned about a rash, our team of experienced dermatologists can help determine the cause of your rash and the best course of action in treating it.

Rosacea

If you find that your face is often flushed or ruddy, you may have rosacea, a chronic skin disease that causes redness, inflammation, skin sensitivity, and occasionally pimples and bumps on the face and forehead. Rosacea often comes and goes, and flare-ups can be caused by factors that increase blood flow to the vessels in your skin, such as exercise, hot or spicy foods, medications, alcohol, extreme temperatures, stress, hot baths or sunlight. Severe rosacea can sometimes lead to rhinophyma, a condition in which the tissue on and around the nose thickens permanently.

Rosacea is most commonly found in fair-skinned women, and tends to worsen if left untreated. It can be managed through prescription antibiotics, acne medications, topical lotions, creams or gels. If you have persistent redness on your face, our specialists can help design a personalized treatment plan for your condition, including any lifestyle changes that can help reduce flare-ups.

Scabies

If you’ve been experiencing a rash that itches and small bumps or tracks in the folds of your skin, scabies might be the culprit. An itchy rash caused by very tiny mites that burrow under your skin, scabies most often appears in areas of the skin that are warmer or tend to have creases, such as the fingers, wrists, armpits, knees, pelvic area, shoulder blades, and soles of the feet. It is also highly contagious and spreads easily through close physical contact – so if you have it, other members of your household might be affected as well.

The good news is that scabies is easy to treat. Topical treatments kill both the mites and their eggs, and our specialists can help you take the precautions you need to ensure that your home and everyone in it is free of scabies. If you have a rash, particularly one that gets worse at night, contact us immediately. We can help you determine the cause and best possible treatment.

Scars

Sometimes a scar can be a badge of honor or a great story, but some are inconvenient or embarrassing – and occasionally even painful. If you have scars that are noticeable, widespread (such as acne scars), large, or raised, we offer a number of methods to reduce their appearance.

Options range from microdermabrasion to cosmetic injectables to laser resurfacing. We can also prescribe topical medications or creams to make scars less painful or apparent. If you have a scar that’s been bothering you, our team can consult with you and help you determine the best treatment method for you.

Shingles

If you’ve had chickenpox at any point in your life, you may be in the clear – or the virus may reactivate years later as shingles, a viral infection that results in a painful rash. Symptoms of shingles include pain, burning, numbness or tingling of the skin, followed by an itchy rash on one side of your body that blisters. You may also experience flu-like symptoms including headache and sensitivity to light. Shingles is contagious for those who are not already immune to chickenpox.

If you suspect you may have shingles, you should see one of our dermatologists as soon as possible, particularly if you have a weakened immune system or are pregnant. Getting early antiviral treatment can reduce the effects of shingles and help your rash heal more quickly. Your dermatologist may also prescribe pain medications to help you deal with discomfort.

Skin Allergies – Contact Dermatitis

Most skin allergies are typically the result of direct contact with a potential irritant or allergen on the skin surface, causing an itchy, red, scaly rash that can become swollen, blister and weep in severe cases.

An irritant contact dermatitis occurs when the skin is exposed to a chemical or physical agent that damages the skin surface faster than the skin can repair it, resulting in a rash that can be either immediate (minutes to hours) or delayed (days to weeks) depending on the irritant involved. Since an irritant contact dermatitis is not caused by an allergy, everyone is susceptible, which can be helpful if an occupational exposure is suspected. In addition, the rash is typically well localized to the area(s) exposed and does not spread to other sites that were not in contact with the irritant. Some irritant examples include detergents, soaps, solvents, acids, and even friction.

An allergic contact dermatitis occurs when the skin comes into contact with a potential allergen. In contrast to an irritant contact dermatitis, not everyone will be allergic to the allergen and repeated exposure is required before an allergy is to develop. If the allergic reaction is severe enough, the rash can spread to other sites that were not exposed and become generalized. Some common allergens include poison ivy, nickel, rubber, fragrances and topical antibiotics (e.g., Neosporin).

Identifying the potential irritant or allergen causing a contact dermatitis can be very challenging. At Dermatology Specialists, we offer a comprehensive program that begins with properly diagnosing your skin condition, helping you identify the specific trigger causing your skin allergy, and then working with you to develop an individualized treatment plan to control and/or eliminate the problem.

Skin Cancer & Treatments

According to the American Cancer Society, skin cancer is now the most common of all cancers in the United States. The good news is that skin cancer is highly curable when diagnosed and treated early by a skilled dermatologist.

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Summer Skin Irritants

To protect yourself from poison ivy and other summer skin irritants, it’s best to wear long pants, long sleeves, and gloves when you’re in an area with a high risk for exposure, and to learn how to identify these plants by sight. If you do brush up against a skin-irritating plant, wash the area with water as soon as possible.

Even with these precautions, it’s possible to come into contact with poison ivy, oak, or sumac and develop a red, itchy rash within one or two days of exposure. Severe rashes can include fluid-filled blisters and hives. When a rash causes extensive blistering, affects a sensitive area of the body such as the face, or lasts for more than three weeks, one of our dermatologists can prescribe topical treatments, corticosteroid medication, or an injection to reduce symptoms.

Vitiligo

Vitiligo is a condition that causes the loss of pigmentation (or color) of the skin. It appears as lighter splotches or patches of skin with undefined borders. Vitiligo can affect any part of the body, such as skin, hair, or even the pigment of your eye. Although the exact cause of vitiligo is unknown, the condition is not life threatening or contagious.

Vitiligo can be treated with the goal of restoring some of the color that is lost. Topical medications, light therapy, and the excimer laser are commonly used options for treatment. Our providers can recommend the treatment that may work best for your skin.

Warts

Warts are a skin growth caused by a form of human papillomavirus (HPV), that increases cell growth on the surface of the skin. While most warts are common and relatively harmless, others may cause serious diseases such as cervical cancer.

Warts come in a range of sizes, shapes, and textures, from rough raised bumps with black dots to flat, smooth patches on the skin. While most common warts will disappear on their own if left alone, many people choose to have their warts removed because they are highly contagious and can be uncomfortable and embarrassing.

At Dermatology Specialists, our specialists offer a variety of removal options, including salicylic acid, freezing (cryotherapy), electrosurgery, curettage, and laser surgery.