News and Notes
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Last Friday, Jason Saul, PA-C and I spent the day talking to staff at Longwood Gardens about how best to care for skin that is exposed to the elements all day every day. Of course, not everyone who works at Longwood works out of doors, but even they had questions and concerns we were happy to be able to address.
Overall, we were pleased to note how much many staffers already knew. It has generally been our experience that people who work out of doors are under the impression that they have built up some immunity to sun radiation and no longer need to worry about it. Of course, nothing could be further from the truth and, fortunately, the Longwood folks were already cued into that and were just wanting to know how to go the extra mile to protect themselves. Wind and water exposure also pose problems and we talked about that, too.
Thank you to Madelyn Underwood, Director of Human Resources at Longwood, for inviting and taking such good care of this while we were there. It was so successful, we may make this an annual event.
I must apologize for not taking any pictures. (At Longwood that's almost a sin.) I got so involved in a conversation with folks that I didn't have the chance. But since a visit is worth a thousand pictures, I suggest you visit https://longwoodgardens.org and plan a time to go and see for yourself. Don't forget to bring a hat, lip balm and, naturally, sunscreen.
I actually got a call the other day from someone wanting to sell me pirated Botox®. Now, I knew someone had to be doing business with those people, but I also knew it was never going to be us. I said, "No, thank you.", of course.
Pirated Botox® and other injectables is a bigger problem than you might imagine. Not long ago Allergan, the makers of Botox®, took more steps to protect healthcare providers and their patients from product that might not be authentic, or may have lost potency. Here is their communication regarding those steps.
Many patients will not require an entire 100 unit vial of Botox® so, the carton containing the vial we are drawing from may be unsealed, but we are still happy to let you see the markings on the carton and the label. Don't be shy about asking. We want you to know that we would never allow you to receive anything other than the real deal.
Something else you should know: Allergan's Brilliant Distinctions Rewards Program is another layer of protection for you. Brilliant Distinctions is only available in offices buying product directly from Allergan. In addition, your rewards points cannot be awarded without identifying the lot # on the vial from which your dose was drawn. If you are getting rewards points, you know its OK.
Unfortunately, over the years many people have been told by poorly informed, non-dermatologist, healthcare providers (or, in my case, by an unethical dermatologist) that every mole or funky-looking lesion needs to be removed because it is pre-cancerous. This simply isn't the case.
In our office, it is common practice to photograph lesions and ask patients to come back periodically so that we can make sure there have been no dangerous changes. Sometimes a mole is just a mole and there are a host of other kinds of lesions that may be prominent or unsightly, but are completely benign. You may, of course, choose to have something removed for any number of reasons. Just know that good care does not mean getting everything cut-out and biopsied. We have seen patients covered in scars from excisions that may not have been necessary. That's a shame and not something we would want to do to someone who has put their trust in us
DOT (Dermal Optical Thermolysis) Therapy
DOT is a new and exciting way of reversing the appearance of aged or sun-damaged skin. Wrinkles, skin discoloration, sun-spots, skin laxity, and scars all may be reduced or eliminated with DOT therapy. This innovative, new laser procedure takes less than one hour in our office and may restore a more youthful appearance. While the aging process cannot be stopped, with proper care you can maintain your rejuvenated skin's appearance for many years. Because DOT Therapy delivers the desired outcome with minimal downtime, it is rapidly replacing traditional laser skin resurfacing as the treatment of choice for mild to moderate signs of photoaging and damaged skin.
During the procedure, a pattern of tiny scanned pulses of laser energy will be applied to your skin. The DOT Therapy laser precisely creates thousands of microscopic holes (DOTs) in your skin, which induce immediate skin tightening and stimulate new collagen growth. DOT therapy is designed to improve the skin's texture and tone, and to fight fine lines, deep wrinkles, and acne scars.
Unlike older laser technology, DOT Therapy leaves islands of healthy tissue surrounding the microscopic dots This enables your skin to heal more rapidly. Immediately afterward, you will experience redness and some discomfort similar to a sunburn. You may also experince some peeling after about three to four days. In most cases, your skin will return to its normal appearance in five to seven days. You should be able to wear make-up after the third day post- procedure.
For your comfort, you will receive a topical and/or injected local anesthetic just prior to treatment. Maximizing your comfort is our highest priority. People with unusually low pain thresholds can ask for a sedative, but you will not be able to drive yourself. We will need to be assured that you have a friend, relative, or taxi available to get you home safely. Having said that, many people have no difficulty tolerating the procedure with minimal anesthetic. The procedure lasts less than an hour. Once the procedure is over, a cold compress will be applied. During your recovery you will apply a hydrating lotion to keep your skin moist and to promote rapid healing. In most cases, you may resume your normal make-up application after three days.
DOT Therapy can be performed safely on most skin types. Many people get excellent results after just one treatment. However, your specific needs may require two to six visits. You will discuss this with your provider at your cosmetic consultation visit. Multiple treatments are usually spaced approximately, one month apart. However, spacing treatments further apart will not negatively affect your results.