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Skin Disorders

Skin Disorders Under the Microscope

Skin disorders may be one of the most difficult types of medical conditions to diagnose. Dermatologists are are the first type of physician that can enlighten you not only about your skin condition, but also your skin care routine.  In fact, they offer medical grade skin care products that do not compare with store bought products to treat your skin condition an help preserve the beauty of your skin.  One may say that an examination for a skin disorder is like putting skin under a microscope. When physicians diagnose skin conditions in people, the examination that may include:

  • Visual presentation
  • Appearance in shape, size such as linear, circular or generalized
  • Color including: white, yellow, red, blue, brown, black
  • Symptoms such as discomfort
  • Morphology such as papules or vesicles (Dr. Crutchfield- I need laymen definitions?)
  • Location such as arms or legs

In fact, there are different types of treatments that may be available, depending upon the disorder. Let’s explore some of the common skin conditions and their signs. The following partial list cannot attempt, diagnose or treat any skin disorder, but represents a small sample of some of the common symptoms and types of skin conditions associated with those conditions.

Flush, Reddened Face with Pimples (with or without visible blood vessels): Signs for rosacea, rhinophyma, adult acne. Treatments for rosacea include the use of topical and oral antibiotics. More recently, laser treatments have been used to reduce the appearance of noticeable blood vessels and redness in the face.

Facial or Body Skin Flaking, including Cradle Cap: Signs for Seborrheic dermatitis. steroid solutions and creams as well as prescription shampoos for dandruff.

Skin Scaling, Redness and Inflammation: Symptoms of psoriasis including five different types: plague, guttate, pustular, inverse, and erythrodermic. Complications include: Infection, fluid loss, and poor circulation. Treatment for psoriasis ranges from topical applications including steroids and salicylic acid; to phototherapy (UVB and PUVA light treatments); to biologic and systematic medications for more serious cases.

Intolerable Itching, Redness, and Inflammation. Freckled skin, including Cradle Cap: Symptoms for a number of forms of eczema including: atopic eczema, allergic contact dermatitis, irritant contact dermatitis eczema, infantile seborrhoeic eczema, varicose eczema, discoid eczema. The treatment for eczema varies, depending on the type. Some treatments include emollients, steroids, anti-fungal cream, and moisturizers. Your doctor may suggest that you get rid of potential eczema irritants such as detergents or perfumes that cause allergic reactions.

White Patchy Skin or Hair Areas: Vitiligo affects up to five million Americans. The condition may appear in childhood or adulthood. Then treatment options are diverse including: topical and oral steroids, photochemotherapy, skin grafting and melanocyte transplants.

The information is this article cannot replace information you receive from a physician. Nor can this information attempt to diagnose or treat a skin condition. Yet, hopefully, some of the red flags will be evident here to demonstrate that skin is an important organ to pay attention to. It is important to see a physician about concerns regarding your skin as soon as visibly evident. Early detection can be helpful in the management of skin conditions. The good news is that there are many treatment options available for skin disorders. Dermatologists are keenly familiar with the many types of skin disorders and are dedicated to skin care for conditions that may develop.

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