Wondering what issues a dermatologist can help with? Here are eight areas where going to a dermatology clinic might be the answer! They include acne, tattoo removal, allergy testing and skin checks.
#1 Acne treatments by a dermatologist
While acne vulgaris and acne rosacea might sound the same, they are two very different conditions. Singapore dermatologist Dr Angeline Yong says that getting the right diagnosis is important for the successful management of these conditions, which may even co-exist in the same patient.
The condition known as acne vulgaris involves blockage or inflammation of the “pilosebaceous units” (the collective name for the hair follicle, hair shaft and sebaceous gland), which can lead to a mix of lesions such as blackheads, whiteheads, papules, pustules and even cysts on the skin.
This a condition where the skin is very sensitive and reactive, and it’s often associated with an underlying persistent redness over certain areas of the face.
Dermatology in Singapore for acne treatments
For acne vulgaris, the treatment options can range from topical creams – for example, benzoyl peroxide, antibiotics, azelaic acid and retinoids – to oral medication such as isotretinoin and antibiotics, hormonal medications for women, or even external modalities such as blue light LED and chemical peels.
Gold Photothermal Therapy
An alternative for patients who prefer not to take any oral medications is a newer modality known as Gold Photothermal Therapy laser treatment. This treatment uses gold microparticles along with the radiation of laser to effectively reduce acne lesions by targeting the sebaceous glands.
How does it work? The gold microparticles are first delivered into the skin pores through sonophoresis (ultrasound). These nano-sized microparticles are then heated with a long pulse Gentlemax laser (Nd:YAG laser), which targets the sebaceous glands. During this process, the gold microparticles convert photon energy from the laser to thermal energy. This heating process modifies targeted sebaceous glands, decreasing the activity level of the oil production.
Patients with rosacea are typically not suitable for certain topicals like retinoids and oral medications like isotretinoin, which are usually very effective in the management of acne vulgaris. This is because they have a very sensitive and reactive skin type.
Instead, topical creams containing metronidazole and ivermectin are useful in the management of rosacea, and so is brimonidine, which can help to narrow the blood vessels and reduce the symptoms of redness and flushing on a day-to-day basis for patients. Oral antibiotics such as doxycycline can also reduce the inflammation within the skin.
Finally, external options such as Pulsed-Dye Laser are a potential game-changer for patients wanting a more definitive solution to the persistent flushing and redness associated with rosacea. Pulsed-Dye Laser has a wavelength of 595nm and is selectively absorbed by the haemoglobin in the blood vessels of the skin. This laser wavelength targets blood vessels without adversely affecting the surrounding tissue; the resultant effect is a gentle heating and uniform coagulation of the blood vessels, which are gradually reduced during the natural healing process. This leads to longer-term satisfactory improvement of flushing and redness, and a subsequent better quality of life.
Angeline Yong Dermatology
#02-04/05 and #03-02 Gleneagles Medical Centre, 6 Napier Road
6252 0026 | 6592 1311
More reasons to see a dermatologist in Singapore
#2 Skin checks
Skin cancer screening at a dermatology clinic involves a visual examination of the entire skin from top to toe, in search of abnormal looking moles. Being a light-skinned Caucasian puts you at higher risk, as does a family history of skin cancer.
#3 Minor skin surgery
Taking skin biopsies, or removing suspicious moles, skin tags and small cysts, are all quick procedures that can be done under local anaesthesia at a dermatologist in Singapore.
#4 Allergy testing
Comprehensive allergy testing takes into account your clinical history together with your symptoms – what type of reaction you’re experiencing, for example – in order to decide which allergy tests would be best. Your allergen test results are then correlated with this detailed information.
#5 Atopic eczema
Managing atopic dermatitis in both adults and children is important. The causes of the dry, scaly patches are multifactorial.
They can include environmental triggers such as the weather, food allergies, or exposure to irritants such as harsh soaps, sand or prickly grass.
Barrier dysfunction in the skin has also been pinpointed as a major underlying cause. Some patients are lacking in the gene for the protein filaggrin, which helps to maintain the skin’s important barrier function. Though there’s no single cure as yet, a lot can be done to lessen the discomfort.
#6 Tattoo removal
Mercifully, tattoos don’t have to be forever! Effective removal depends on several things. Black and blue colours are easier to remove than red, white or yellow. Even a single-colour black tattoo will require six or more sessions. Other factors include the age of the tattoo and the density of the pigment.
Facial pigmentation patches can be due to one or more of many causes, so proper diagnosis is important. Melasma is one of the most common causes. For some, it’s a hormonal issue that emerges during pregnancy, or after taking the pill, and worsens with exposure to UV light.
No one is immune, but Asians tend to be more susceptible. It’s a condition that needs to be controlled over the long term.
#8 Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs)
Singapore dermatologists are often also venereologists who can provide discreet screening and treatment of STIs for both men and women. Apart from HIV, these include genital warts, chlamydia warts, gonorrhoeal infections and more.
Finally, remember that your dermatologist is often a good, safe option for high-tech anti-ageing treatments, including Botox and fillers, plus various IPL, laser, ultrasound and radio frequency-based skin-tightening technologies such as Thermage, ultherapy and more.
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