Acne or Acne Vulgaris is one of the most common skin condition that affects people of all ages. It is an inflammatory condition that affects the oil glands of the face, back and chest. Acne occurs when pores become clogged and bacteria begins to grow in the pores, trapping the sebum or oil below the skin surface. There are many forms of acne. Most commonly it is characterized by whiteheads and blackheads sometimes referred to as zits, pimples or comedones. More severe acne manifests itself through cysts and nodules. Without treatment acne may leave red or dark pigmentation and permanent scars. To minimize any permanent skin changes, effective acne care includes medications, acne surgery procedures, steroid injections, chemical peels as well as laser and light based treatments.
An allergic rash, also known as allergic dermatitis, is an inflammation of the skin resulting from contact with an allergen that the skin is sensitive to. Common allergens are shampoos, makeup, fragrances, metals, jewelry and pets. Once the skin comes in contact with an allergen, a natural defense causes skin inflammation in the form of rashes. Rashes may be bumpy, flat, dry, red, scaly, itchy and/or flaky. No matter the type of inflammation it is uncomfortable and distressing. It is important to identify the allergen/trigger causing the rash and avoid contact. Topical creams or oral steroids may be used to treat an allergic rash.
Angiomas are benign skin growths made up of abnormal proliferation of endothelial cells and blood vessels at the surface of the skin. Angiomas range in color from bright red to purple and occur all over the body in different sizes and shapes. Despite ranging in size and shape, they typically grow larger as we age. Although harmless to your health, they may be cosmetically unappealing or prone to bleeding. There are three types of angiomas. Cherry angiomas which are characterized by their red color and increase in number as people age. Spider angiomas are red spots surrounded by capillaries which resemble spider legs. Venous lake angiomas are often found on the lips. Angiomas are benign and easy to treat. Angiomas may be removed by cryosurgery (freezing), electrosurgery or using cosmetic lasers.
Skin cysts, also known as epidermoid cysts and sebaceous cysts are bumps full of dead skin cells or liquid (pus) which occur under the skin and are caused by plugged ducts at the site of a hair follicle. Cysts may become inflamed or infected and can be painful. Skin cysts are typically larger than acne and severe acne can evolve into cysts. Lack of treatment may cause permanent scarring. Treatment of cysts involves drainage and use of acne medications.
Dandruff, also known as Seborrheic Dermatitis, is a common condition in which white, greasy scales flake off the scalp, ears and face making the skin itchy and uncomfortable. Seborrheic Dermatitis can be cause by a number of different factors. However, most commonly, it is due to an overgrowth of the a normal skin fungus called malassezia. Though it is found on healthy skin, some people are sensitive to this fungus. When a person is sensitive to malassezia, their body goes through an immune reaction producing extra skin oil and irritation, therefore producing flaky skin called dandruff. Dandruff does not only affect the scalp, it may also affect the eyebrows, forehead, and ears. Dandruff can be treated with a variety of medicated shampoos; such as anti-fungal, tar and salicylic acid shampoos as well as creams.
Eczema, also known as atopic dermatitis. It is a skin rash caused by an immune response. Eczema is characterized by itchy, red, irritated patches and can occasionally ooze, flake and thicken. Common triggers that flare ups include; contact with allergens, temperature changes, stress or even common colds. Children as well as adults are affected by eczema. Genetics play a big part in who is affected by eczema but many other factors such as the environment and an abnormal function of the immune system may cause people to experience eczema. Eczema is treated by avoiding exposure to allergens. Prescription topical and sometimes oral medications are used to relieve itchiness and eliminate symptoms of eczema. It is important to see a health care professional in order to help identify triggers of eczema. With proper medical treatments the disease can be controlled.
A Fungal Nail Infection occurs when a fungus attacks a fingernail, toenail or the nail bed skin. Fungi can attack a nail through a cut or some other nail damage. Fungal infections can cause serious problems for people with diabetes or compromised immune systems. Walking barefoot in showers or pools as well as sharing towels and dirty nail clippers may raise the chance of someone being exposed to nail fungus. The same fungus that causes athletes foot may cause a fungal nail infection by spreading from the skin to the nail. When infected with a fungus, the nail typically becomes brittle, changes in shape and color and may even detach from the nail bed. The treatment of fungal nail infections takes a long time and includes topical medications and sometimes oral drugs.
Genital warts are warts that appear in the genital area. They can appear as one wart or a cluster of many small warts. Genital warts are caused by certain strains of the human papillomavirus (HPV). They can cause discomfort or pain and bleeding. Some of the ways to treat genital warts include: freezing with liquid nitrogen, electrocautery, and laser treatments.
A keloid is scar tissue which develops after skin trauma; such as after a cut, piercing or surgical incision. African-americans are more predisposed to keloid scars, though keloids can happend on patients of all ethnic backgrounds. A keloid scar has a smooth surface and hard consistency. It is usually pink or red in color. Face, chest, upper back and shoulders are the most frequent locations of keloids. A keloid is caused by an excessive amount of collagen production as the body heals itself. Although keloids are not harmful, they may be aesthetically unpleasant. There are number of different treatments to address this condition.
Melasma or Chloasma are common skin conditions affecting thousands of people. Melasma and chloazma cause brown patches on the cheeks, nose, forehead, chin or upper lip. Women are more often affected by this condition then men. Sun exposure is most common precipitating factor of melasma, However, changes in hormones such as pregnancy, taking some medication as well as use of some cosmetic products can cause an onset on melasma. Melasma or chloasma can be treated using topical medication, microdermabrasion, chemical peels, topical bleach creams and laser lightening and resurfacing
Rosacea is a common skin disease that causes redness, pimples and bumps on the face, mainly on the nose, cheeks, forehead and chin. Rosacea usually affects people who have fair skin and are over 30. Rosacea is hereditary and known to run in families. It is not caused by bacteria and experts are unsure of its exact cause. Certain things are known to flare up rosacea and make it worse. These triggers are alcohol, stress, hot weather, and certain foods. In rare cases, Rosacea can affect the eyes, cause loss of vision and cause thickening of the nose (called rhinophyma). Although there is no cure, medicines can help alleviate symptoms and keep them under control.
Scars are the results of a body’s healing process after an injury, trauma, surgery or acne. Scars may look different in textures and colors from the surrounding skin. Some small scars may go away completely over time but large deep scars may never diminish. Though permanent, scars can be removed or minimized. Scars may be treated and minimized by lasers and bleaching creams if discoloration is present. Microderm abrasion, certain surgeries and injections may help scars as well.
Skin tags, also known as acrochordons, are an inherited skin condition that causes small flesh or brown colored growths that can occur anywhere on the body. Skin tags are benign but may become irritated after contact with clothing. Once skin tags appears, they continue to grow. The most common areas for skin tags are eyelids, face, armpits, chest, neck and the groin area. Though they can appear at any age, skin tags are most prevelant among middle-aged and older individuals. Many people opt to remove skin tags because of their appearance; there is no medical reason to have them removed. Skin tags may be removed with liquid nitrogen like a wart or with cauterization. A trained healthcare professional will help identify a skin tag and make sure it is not a precancerous mole or something serious.
Warts are small skin growths caused by the Human Papillomavirus (HPV). There are over 100 types of HPV and some strains cause warts on the skin. Warts are usually painless, skin colored and round. There are five types of warts:
-The common wart: vurruca vulgaris
This type of wart is common in children and can spread from hands to the face through touch or nail biting. These warts are most common on hands and where skin was broken. The centers of these warts have a black dot and feels like a rough bump.
-Foot warts: also called plantar warts
These warts are located on the soles of feet and can be hard to treat. They can grow in clusters and are often flat or grow inward. Foot warts can hurt and feel like pebbles in your shoes. Occasionally black dots present in the center of the wart.
These warts can occur anywhere. Typically children get them on their face, men on their beard area and women on their legs. Flat warts are smoother and smaller than other warts and can grow in large numbers up to 100 at a time.
These warts look like long threads or fingers that stick out and grow often. They usually grow on the face; around the mouth, eyes and nose.
These warts grow under a person’s toenail and fingernails. They look like rough bumps. There are over the counter medications for warts, mostly consisting of salicylic acid solution or a freezing spray. Over the counter treatments are not as powerful or effective as the treatments done by healthcare professionals. Warts on the face and genitals should always be treated by healthcare professionals. Medications can be prescribed, liquid nitrogen or lasers can be used in a medical setting to remove the wart. Lasers are the fastest treatment optional available.
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