Medical Spa Blog
Posts for: March, 2017
Although moles are usually harmless, in some cases they can become cancerous, causing melanoma. For this reason, it is important to regularly examine your skin for any moles that change in size, color, shape, sensation or that bleed. Suspicious or abnormal moles or lesions should always be examined by your dermatologist.
What to Look For
Remember the ABCDE's of melanoma when examining your moles. If your mole fits any of these criteria, you should visit your dermatologist as soon as possible.
- Asymmetry. One half of the mole does not match the other half.
- Border. The border or edges of the mole are poorly defined or irregular.
- Color. The color of the mole is not the same throughout or has shades of tan, brown, black, blue, white or red.
- Diameter. The diameter of a mole is larger than the eraser of a pencil.
- Evolution. The mole is changing in size, shape or color.
Moles can appear anywhere on the skin, including the scalp, between the fingers and toes, on the soles of the feet and even under the nails. The best way to detect skin cancer in its earliest, most curable stage is by checking your skin regularly and visiting our office for a full-body skin cancer screening. Use this guide to perform a self-exam.
- Use a mirror to examine your entire body, starting at your head and working your way to the toes. Also be sure to check difficult to see areas, including between your fingers and toes, the groin, the soles of your feet and the backs of your knees.
- Pay special attention to the areas exposed to the most sun.
- Don't forget to check your scalp and neck for moles. Use a handheld mirror or ask a family member to help you.
- Develop a mental note or keep a record of all the moles on your body and what they look like. If they do change in any way (color, shape, size, border, etc.), or if any new moles look suspicious, visit your dermatologist right away.
Skin cancer has a high cure rate if detected and treated early. The most common warning sign is a visible change on the skin, a new growth, or a change in an existing mole. Depending on the size and location of the mole, dermatologists may use different methods of mole removal. A body check performed by a dermatologist can help determine whether the moles appearing on the body are pre-cancerous or harmless.
Are you looking for a simple way to improve your appearance that doesn't involve surgery? Dr. Curt Birchall of Rocky River Med Spa - The Fountain Clinic in Rocky River, OH, discusses several treatments you'll want to consider, including laser skin rejuvenation.
Both Botox and dermal fillers are injected into your skin to reduce lines and wrinkles. Botox works by temporarily blocking nerve impulses from reaching the muscles that cause frowning and other expressions, while fillers plump up lines and also restore volume.
Microdermabrasion removes the top layers of the skin with a fine spray of crystals. Once those layers are removed, surface wrinkles and scars will be gone. Microdermabrasion tightens your skin, improves texture and also thickens collagen, the protein that gives skin its elasticity.
Laser Skin Rejuvenation
Laser skin rejuvenation works by heating the layer of collagen under your skin and breaking down the pigment that can cause age spots and broken capillaries. It offers many benefits and can:
- Make lines, wrinkles and acne scars less noticeable
- Tighten and firm your skin, which also reduces wrinkles
- Get rid of dark skin patches, age spots, large pores, spider veins, stretch marks and freckles
- Reduce inflammation and redness common in rosacea
There's no downtime with laser skin rejuvenation. In fact, you can go back to work after your session at Dr. Birchall's Rocky River office, if you wish. Although your skin may look a little red for a few hours after treatment, you won't experience any uncomfortable side effects. Depending on the condition of your skin, you may need approximately three to five sessions to obtain the desired results.
Why not take advantage of laser skin rejuvenation or one of these other treatments to improve your skin? Call Dr. Birchall at Rocky River Med Spa - The Fountain Clinic in Rocky River, OH, at (216) 503-8517 to schedule your appointment.
Eczema, also called “dermatitis,” refers to several different rash-like conditions where the skin is inflamed, red and irritated. The most severe and long-lasting type of eczema is atopic dermatitis. During a flare-up, the skin becomes extremely red, itchy and scaly. This skin condition can be widespread, or confined to only a few areas on the body.
Eczema is not contagious, although if you have a family history of eczema, your risk for the disease increases. Generally, atopic dermatitis affects infants or young children and may last until the child reaches adulthood.
The appearance and symptoms for atopic dermatitis will vary for each case. Intense itching is the most common sign of eczema, which can lead to severe discomfort and even loss of sleep. Other common symptoms of eczema include:
- Dry, red and extremely itchy patches of skin
- Cracked, inflamed and scaly skin
- Small bumps or blisters that ooze and weep
- In infants, the rash generally appears on the cheeks and around the mouth
Eczema outbreaks are caused by an overreaction of your skin’s immune system to environmental and emotional triggers, such as temperature, chemicals, dust, mold or stress. While there is currently no cure, eczema sufferers can practice self-care at home to help reduce flare-ups. Lifestyle adjustments are the best line of defense in controlling all types of eczema. Goals of treatment include reducing inflammation, decreasing risk of infection and alleviating the itch. To minimize symptoms and outbreaks:
- Moisturize every day to prevent dryness and cracking.
- Limit contact with irritants, such as soaps, clothing, jewelry, foods and detergents.
- Avoid sudden changes in temperatures as overheating and sweating are common triggers of flare-ups.
- Reduce stress and anxiety.
- Minimize exposure to mold, pollens and animal dander.
- Opt for cotton, loose-fitting clothes and avoid wool and other rough materials.
Treatment for eczema begins with a proper diagnosis from your dermatologist. If you are diagnosed with eczema, your dermatologist can explain your type of eczema and can work with you to tailor a treatment plan that meets your individual needs to effectively manage the symptoms.