Posts for category: Skin Conditions

By Dermatology & Dermatologic Surgery, Ltd.
August 03, 2016
Category: Skin Conditions
Tags: Acne  

Discover how you could be on your way to clearer skin.

While it’s fair to say that acne happens to everyone at some point in their lives, some people get it much worse than others. Acne is not only uncomfortable and embarrassing, but it can also put quite the damper on your confidence. Fortunately our South Barrington andAcne Willowbrook, IL dermatologists, Drs. Jeffrey and Toula Romas Berti, have helpful tips for how to treat your acne problems.
 

Know How to Clean Your Skin
Washing your skin is a major part of keeping it free of the bacteria and irritants that can clog pores and cause whiteheads and blackheads. How you wash is just as important as what you use to cleanse your face. Always opt for gentle cleansers and never rub your skin. Rubbing won’t get it cleaner!

At Dermatology & Dermatologic Surgery, we have a variety of skin care cleansers and products.

Don’t Forget to Exfoliate
This is an often forgotten piece of the skincare puzzle for many, but you don’t want to just leave dead skin cells to buildup on your skin.

Choose an exfoliant wisely, as some contain oils and can aggravate your skin and acne. During a skin care consultation at Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery with either Dr. Jeffrey Berti or Dr. Toula Berti , we will review your products and provide insight as to which products would be best clear your skin.

Look Carefully at Your Products
All products that you use from your daily cleanser to your sunscreen should be oil-free. Look for the word “noncomedogenic” on product labels. This means it won’t clog pores.
Are you still not sure if the products you are using are good enough to prevent acne? Well your South Barrington and Willowbrook skin doctor can help you decide on a skincare line that will target your acne outbreaks and give you clearer skin. Just ask!

Medications
Maybe you’ve tried just about every product on the market and you still aren’t getting the relief you need. If so, then it’s time you talked to us about whether acne medication is the best treatment option for you. Here are some of the more popular types of medications that reduce the frequency and severity of acne:

  • Retinoids
  • Benzoyl Peroxide
  • Antibiotics
  • Isotretinoin (for serious acne)
  • Medical Washes

Dermatology & Dermatologic Surgery, Ltd in South Barrington and Willowbrook, IL is here to address all of your skincare needs. Whether acne has you down in the dumps or you just want to consider a cosmetic treatment such as a microdermabrasion and/or a chemical peel, we can help you get a younger and healthier-looking you!

CHICAGO (April 1, 2015) — Like a mosaic slowly gaining definition and becoming clear, so too is the scientific understanding of the potential causes of rosacea. April has been designated as Rosacea Awareness Month by the National Rosacea Society (NRS) to educate the public on the warning signs of this chronic but treatable facial disorder now estimated to affect more than 16 million Americans. 

The NRS has long supported medical research on rosacea through its patient-funded research grants program, awarding $1.4 million to date for 56 studies that may lead to advances in its treatment and potential prevention or cure. Ongoing research has suggested that rosacea may be caused by various possible factors, including defects of the immune system, nervous system, facial blood vessels and genetics, as well as the presence of microbes and Demodex mites on the skin. Meanwhile, there is now an expanding range of treatment options for its many potential signs and symptoms.

“Researchers are now making steady progress in defining potential causes of the disorder, which may provide a foundation for significant improvements in its effective control,” said Dr. Richard Gallo, chief of dermatology at the University of California – San Diego and a member of the NRS medical advisory board. “Nevertheless, translating those scientific advances into effective therapy will be for naught if those who suffer from the disorder fail to realize they have a medical condition that can be treated.”

In a recent NRS survey of 1,459 rosacea patients, 47 percent said they had never heard of rosacea prior to their diagnosis, and 95 percent said they had known little or nothing about its signs and symptoms. In other NRS surveys, 90 percent of rosacea patients said rosacea’s effect on personal appearance had lowered their self-esteem and self-confidence, and 41 percent said it had caused them to avoid public contact or cancel social engagements.

“Promoting early recognition of rosacea’s warning signs is a primary goal of the NRS because early diagnosis and treatment can keep the disorder from progressing to the point where it becomes an emotional and social burden,” Dr. Gallo said. 

Rosacea typically first strikes anytime after age 30, and may initially resemble a simple sunburn or an inexplicable blush. Suddenly, without warning, a flush comes to their cheeks, nose, chin or forehead. Then just when they start to feel concerned, the redness disappears.

Unfortunately, it happens again and again, becoming ruddier and lasting longer each time, and eventually visible blood vessels may appear. Without treatment, bumps and pimples often develop, growing more extensive over time, and burning, itching and stinging are common.

In severe cases, especially in men, the nose may become enlarged from the development of excess tissue. This is the condition that gave comedian W.C. Fields his trademark red, bulbous nose. In some people the eyes are also affected, feeling irritated and appearing watery or bloodshot. Severe cases of this condition, known as ocular rosacea, can result in reduced visual acuity.

Among the most famous rosacea sufferers is former President Bill Clinton, whose doctors disclosed that he had this condition in The New York Times. Others reported to have suffered from the disorder include Princess Diana, singer Sam Smith, model Dita Von Teese and actress Lisa Faulkner.

Adding insult to injury is the common myth that rosacea sufferers who have an enlarged nose or ruddy complexion may be heavy drinkers. In fact, while alcohol may aggravate rosacea, these symptoms can be just as severe in a teetotaler.  Another common misconception is that rosacea is caused by poor hygiene, when in reality it is unrelated to personal cleanliness.

Research is helping to dispel these common misconceptions by illuminating rosacea’s relationship to various internal and external factors that may be involved in its development. The role of the innate immune system in rosacea has been the focus of groundbreaking studies funded by the NRS, including the discovery of irregularities of key components known as cathelicidins that may lead to inflammation. Other scientific investigators have documented a possible genetic component, and that the nervous system may be intimately linked with the vascular system in producing the redness of the disorder.  

Medical scientists are now examining the potential role of microscopic Demodex mites, which are normal inhabitants of human skin but often occur in far greater numbers in people with rosacea. It is also believed that an immune response to bacteria associated with the mites may lead to the inflammatory bumps and pimples of the condition.

Although the definitive cause of rosacea remains unknown, a vast array of lifestyle and environmental factors have been found to trigger flare-ups of signs and symptoms in various individuals. Common rosacea triggers include sun exposure, emotional stress, hot or cold weather, wind, heavy exercise, alcohol, spicy foods, heated beverages, humidity, certain skin-care products and potentially an overabundance of Demodex mites.

“The good news is that rosacea can now be effectively controlled with medical therapy and lifestyle changes,” Dr. Gallo said. “Through ongoing progress in medical research, a growing number of medical therapies are now available that can be tailored to each case and substantially reduce the impact of rosacea on people’s lives.”

Individuals with any of the following warning signs of rosacea are urged to see a dermatologist for diagnosis and appropriate treatment:

  • Redness on the cheeks, nose, chin or forehead
  • Small visible blood vessels on the face
  • Bumps or pimples on the face
  • Watery or irritated eyes

During April and throughout the year, people who suspect they may have rosacea can contact the NRS for more information.

Comprehensive information and materials on rosacea are available on the NRS website at rosacea.org. The NRS encourages those interested in spreading awareness during the month of April to visit the official Rosacea Awareness Month landing page and follow the online conversation using the hashtag #RosaceaAwareness. The NRS may also be followed on Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest for up-to-date information and tips on rosacea. Further information may be obtained by writing the National Rosacea Society, 196 James Street, Barrington, Illinois 60010; via email at [email protected]; or by calling its toll-free number at 1-888-NO-BLUSH. 

Global Rosacea Awareness Month

Starting this year the National Rosacea Society has also joined forces with the Global Rosacea Coalition, an independent group of internationally renowned dermatologists, media medics, rosacea sufferers, bloggers, celebrities and professional organizations from around the world, all of whom share the common goal of improving the lives of people with rosacea. The Coalition is holding the first Global Rosacea Awareness Month in April, culminating in the world’s first ever Global Rosacea Tweetathon (#ChatRosacea) on Monday, April 27. Coalition experts including doctors, sufferers and bloggers will take part in a Twitter discussion over six time zones covering core rosacea topics from diagnosis and the impact of living with rosacea to managing symptoms. The conversation begins in Europe and Australia before moving to Latin America and then to the U.S. and Canada.

About the National Rosacea Society

The National Rosacea Society is the world's largest organization dedicated to improving the lives of the estimated 16 million Americans who suffer from this widespread but poorly understood disorder. Its mission is to raise awareness of rosacea, provide public health information on the disorder and support medical research that may lead to improvements in its management, prevention and potential cure.

By Dermatology & Dermatologic Surgery, Ltd.
March 05, 2015
Category: Skin Conditions
Tags: Skin Cancer  

Here are some ways to tell whether that suspicious growth might be skin cancer.

It might be hard to imagine but about 40 to 50 percent of fair-skinned individuals who reach 65 years of age will develop at least skin cancer once in their lifetime. So it’s important to be able to spot the signs of skin cancer as soon as possible so that your can seek skin cancer treatment in Hinsdale. Look for these abnormal skin conditions that could be a warning sign of potential skin cancer.

Actinic keratosis (also known as solar keratosis)

These small patches of scaly skin are signs of too much sun exposure. They are most often found on the head, hands or necks; however, they can develop just about anywhere on the body. These are often a warning sign of skin cancer, however not all of these patches will morph into cancer over time. While many don’t end up becoming skin cancer, most Hinsdale dermatologists recommend early treatment to prevent skin cancer from forming.

Actinic cheilitis

Also referred to as farmer’s lip, this precancerous condition typically is found on the lips. It is related to actinic keratosis and produces the same scaly, rough patches just primarily on the lower lip. Some patients may even experience swelling; however, this tends to be rare. If left untreated, this condition can turn into an invasive form of skin cancer.

How about moles?

While moles are often just benign growths, sometimes they can become cancerous. Abnormal moles can even develop into melanoma; however, this isn’t as common. Moles can be either flat or raised, or change their structure.

So, how do you know if a mole is showing signs of skin cancer?

The telltale sign that there is an issue is if one mole doesn’t look like the rest on your body. As any Hinsdale dermatologist will tell you, it’s important to know your ABCDEs to tell whether it’s time to get your mole checked out.

Asymmetry (“A): This means that one part of the mole doesn’t mirror the same shape as the other side. Since healthy, normal moles are symmetrical, an asymmetrical one could spells problems for this growth at some point in time.

Border (“B”): a mole should have a nice smooth border; however, growths that have turned into melanoma often have blurred or irregular borders.

Color (“C”): A healthy mole is usually one single color. If a mole has different shades of light or dark within it (particularly brown, black, white or red) this is suspicious and needs to be check by your Hinsdale dermatologist.

Diameter (“D”): A mole is considered suspect if it is larger than the eraser on the end of a pencil.

Evolving (“E”): A mole that grows, gets smaller or begins to bleed needs to be examined right away. If you notice that a part of your mole has become raised then it’s time for an exam.

If you are noticing a suspicious mole or growth, then it’s time to have it checked out. After all, it’s better to be safe rather than sorry. To schedule an appointment with your Hinsdale dermatologist contact Dermatology & Dermatologic Surgery, Ltd.

By Dermatology & Dermatologic Surgery, Ltd.
January 29, 2015
Category: Skin Conditions
Tags: Acne  

If you have acne, you've probably heard that you should stop eating chocolate, or that those potato chips you love are causing your breakouts. But the cause of acne is a bit more complicated than that. While it may be difficult to pinpoint exactly what triggers your particular acne flare-ups, there are common causes that you can explore with your dermatologist.

Genes

For starters, some people are just blessed with a family history of clear skin, while others are genetically predisposed to breakouts. You can't change your genes, but you can work with your doctor to minimize breakouts and relieve skin irritation. The hormones of puberty, pregnancy, and even menopause are also to blame. In this case sometimes medications such as contraceptives can help regulate hormone production and reduce the breakout cycle.

Bacteria

Everyone's skin, whether it has acne or not, sports a bacteria called p. acnes which, when interacting with sebum on the skin, can cause pimples. By limiting the production of sebum, you limit the chance p. acnes can grow on the skin thereby reducing acne. In this case, topical antibiotics and retinoids can help prescribed by a dermatologist.

Clogged Pores

The kind of sunscreen or makeup you use may also be causing your breakouts. Leaving makeup on the skin overnight can clog pores and certain beauty products can irritate your sensitive skin leading to inflammation. Cell phones and pillow cases also harbor dirt and bacteria that can cause breakouts. Be sure to regularly clean your makeup brushes, phone, and bedding, and also remove makeup before bed each evening.

Diet

In some cases, certain foods can cause breakouts when you have a sensitivity or allergy. These can sometimes be very subtle, so subtle that acne may be the only symptom. If you believe something in your diet may be causing breakouts, keep a food journal and take special notice of how your skin reacts 4-5 days after eating a particular food. Eliminating that food may stop or at least reduce the acne flare-ups.

Stress

Stress and a lack of sleep can irritate aggravate acne and make it harder for your skin to heal. Underlying health issues such as thyroid problems, metabolic issues, or Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) may also be a cause.

There are a myriad of causes and factors in acne breakouts, sometimes even multiple causes at once. That's why it can be hard to identify the root cause of your skin irritation. But the doctors at Dermatology & Dermatologic Surgery, Ltd. in Hinsdale can help you find out what's bothering your skin and develop a treatment plan to help you achieve the clear and radiant skin you've always wanted.



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