Frontal Fibrosing Alopecia - Hair Loss In Women

Frontal Fibrosing Alopecia - Hair Loss In WomenFrontal fibrosing alopecia (FFA) describes a type of hair loss typically seen on the front of the scalp in women. This condition is on the rise and has become one of the more frequently seen causes of hair loss in women. FFA is a type of scarring alopecia, which was described first in 1994. Increased incidences have been reported worldwide, especially in the US, Europe and Japan. Frontal fibrosing alopecia largely affects post-menopausal women, and women of all ages and men can also present this condition. This is a progressive hair loss which is usually irreversible, making early treatment essential.

What are the Symptoms and Signs of FFA?

Frontal fibrosing alopecia presents as a spectrum, the lightest cases involving only the frontal hairline and eyebrows, while the more severe cases potentially affect the entire hairline, plus facial and body hair. The condition is characterized by a band-like cicatricial alopecia of the frontal region of the scalp. Cicatricial indicates a scar left by formation of new connective tissue. If we observe the hair follicles from a microscope, we see lymphocytes (a type of white blood cells) infiltration and a reduced number of hair follicles along with fibrosis (the healing process with scarring). While FFA may be mostly asymptomatic, some may feel burning sensation, pain or itching in the scalp.

Noticing Some New Sun Damage?

noticing some new sun damageSun exposure has positive benefits to our physical and mental health, but when most people consider UV light and its effects, skin cancer and premature aging are the first to come to mind. There is no question that exposure to the sun and other sources of UV light, like tanning beds, damages the skin. That’s why most dermatologists and public health officials recommend taking steps to avoid sun exposure and protecting yourself with sunscreen on exposed skin whenever you leave the house, even in the wintertime. Spots, blotches, uneven patches, discoloration and wrinkles are all signs of the sun’s damage to your skin.

Wrinkles

Whether you call them wrinkles, laugh lines or crow’s feet, they are a sign that you have spent time in the sun. UV damage from sun exposure, even from long ago, speeds up the wrinkling process by damaging collagen and elastin, the fibers that keep skin firm.  

Sunburns

While sunburns may last only a few days, they can create skin problems later in life. When you have a mild sunburn, UV rays penetrate into the epidermis and your skin turns red and may feel painful and warm to the touch. Mild sunburns may feel itchy and the skin may peel. If your skin blisters, you have a bad sunburn. Sun damage that results in sunburns, damages the molecular structure of skin cells, resulting in cells more likely to become cancerous later in life. If you have severe pain or a fever accompanying your sunburn, make sure to seek medical advice.

The Difference Between Acne and Rosacea

the difference between acne and rosaceaSkin problems can range from simple rashes to conditions that lead to chronic discomfort and self-consciousness. Acne is a common problem, not only in adolescents, but also in adults. Rosacea is a condition that often has symptoms that look similar to acne, but it has different causes and features. Understanding the difference between these two conditions can help you to get the right treatment for your needs.

What Is Acne?

Acne vulgaris, generally referred to simply as “acne,” is caused by excess oil production that clogs in the hair follicles in the skin. Symptoms can be mild or severe, with whiteheads, blackheads, tender pimples and pus-filled lumps below the surface of the skin. As a result, the skin surface can have a reddened appearance, much like rosacea, but the redness is caused by inflammation of the tissues, and not from the appearance of blood vessels on the skin. Acne can be a stubborn problem that requires ongoing medical treatment. Some of the causes for excessive oil production include hormones, diet, stress and certain medications, such as corticosteroids, lithium and testosterone. Hormonal changes of puberty are the greatest cause, however, genetic factors may play a part in developing acne. Contact with oily compounds and stress can also may cause acne.

Medical vs. Cosmetic Dermatology

medical vs cosmetic dermatologyWhile there are a wide variety of health reasons for someone to seek out a dermatologist, including skin cancer, eczema, rashes, psoriasis, warts, acne, and rosacea, many also see the same dermatologist for BOTOX® Cosmetic, chemical peels and to even the skin tone from discolorations. Dermatology as a medical specialty is usually divided into two distinct categories, medical and cosmetic, though they are often practiced by the same dermatologist. Many times there is an overlap between the different dermatological specialties, for example, medical dermatology will treat conditions such as eczema, but cosmetic dermatology will help address scars left by the skin condition. Simply, medical focuses on health while cosmetic focuses on aesthetics. At Adult & Pediatric Dermatology, we offer all facets of dermatology for our patients, focusing on around 90% medical and 10% cosmetic. 

Medical Dermatology

Dermatology in its essence is a medical science – even the term is derived from the roots “derma” (meaning skin) and “logia” (meaning study of), meaning that etymologically, a dermatologist is a skin doctor. Yet their scope is much broader. Medical dermatologists treat patients with medical conditions affecting the skin, help with acne, eczema, rosacea and skin cancer, and can involve topical or oral medications, or both. Surgical dermatology, referring to any procedure requiring anesthesia or involving a scalpel, falls under medical dermatology. This includes tumor removal, moles and cancers. At APDKC, we perform all of our surgical procedures in the office under local anesthesia. More extensive surgical procedures are referred to the appropriate specialist.

can apple cider vinegar treat your atopic dermatitisCan Apple Cider Vinegar Treat your Atopic Dermatitis and other skin conditions?

Apple Cider Vinegar has seen a surge of popularity in the natural health community in recent years due to many health benefits. While Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) has demonstrated remarkable effects in improving weight loss, reducing cholesterol, lowering blood sugar and improving levels of insulin for people with type 2 diabetes, the results of the effects of Apple Cider Vinegar on skin care are currently inconclusive. Yet there are popular claims that ACV can alleviate symptoms associated with Atopic Dermatitis, commonly known as eczema, and various other skin care troubles.

Here’s what you should know before using Apple Cider Vinegar to treat Atopic Dermatitis and other related skin conditions.

Atopic Dermatitis

Atopic Dermatitis (AD), or eczema, occurs due to genetic factors. It is an exaggerated immune response that causes inflammation of the skin leaving it red, rashy and itchy.

It is common in children but can be typical at any age. It is generally a chronic condition but tends to lessen or intensify dependent on various triggers (known as “flare-ups”). Flare-ups might be triggered by allergies such as hay fever or diet; where certain foods increase the susceptibility to bouts of eczema, especially in children

Coronavirus and Dermatology

Coronavirus and DermatologyThough many of the country’s medical resources at present are focused on the battle against novel coronavirus (COVID-19), that doesn’t mean that routine medical care will be neglected. Specialists like Dr. Kaplan and his team at Adult & Pediatric Dermatology (APD) in Overland Park will continue to provide the exceptional care that our patients expect while making sure that their patients remain safe.

Overview of Coronavirus (2019-nCoV)

There is a lot of conflicting information out there on the novel coronavirus that is currently affecting our population. New research comes out every day and unfortunately social media has spread both rumor and truth very far. 

Are Dermatological Patients at Heightened Risk?

Most dermatological patients do not appear to be at heightened risk for complications associated with COVID-19 beyond underlying inherent risk to age or comorbidities. 

Rashes Due to COVID-19

There have been a variety of rashes reported to be associated with COVID-19 including red scaly rashes, hives, bruises, bluish toes and livedo patterns, though not one specific rash has been associated with COVID-19.  The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) has established a COVID-19 registry for physicians and health care professionals treating COVID-19 patients who develop dermatologic manifestations, or patients with an existing dermatologic condition who develop COVID-19. Over time, we anticipate having more information about skin symptoms.

Gluten + Skin Conditions

gluten skin conditionsIf you’ve turned on the TV or browsed the internet for tips on healthy eating in the last 10 years, you’ve likely been exposed to a catalog of gluten-free trends on the market. The gluten-free diet, as expected, restricts intake of the protein gluten which is found in wheat, oats, barley and other grains.

The diet has gained steam in recent years, partially fueled by growing scientific research into chronic health conditions and partially by a food industry capitalizing on another diet that seems to be ever-increasing in popularity.

The research on health benefits of following a gluten-free diet is mixed. For sufferers of digestive diseases, gluten-intolerances or Celiac disease ( a condition where the immune reaction to gluten leads to inflammation and damage of the small intestine) it is advisable to follow a gluten-free diet. Indeed, for these individuals, this restricted diet leads to improved health issues and a better lifestyle.

However, for people without these conditions, there might not be any noticeable improvement in overall health or lifestyle by choosing to follow a gluten-free diet. (Staudacher, 2015)(Stanley, 2010)

Skin disorders, commonly associated with autoimmune activity, were previously thought to be linked to gluten consumption. Advocates of avoiding gluten have claimed that, oftentimes, a skin reaction like a rash due to allergy is likely to be caused by eating gluten. However, recent research has cast doubts on those claims.

Here is everything you need to know about gluten and skin conditions.

What is Gluten and Why is it Sometimes Harmful?

Gluten is a protein that an estimated 4% of the population have difficulty properly digesting. While Celiac Disease is the most extreme gluten-intolerant disorder, some have moderate intolerances or sensitivities caused by gluten.

In Response to COVID-19

in response to covid 19In this time of uncertainty, all of us at Adult & Pediatric Dermatology are certain about providing safe, prompt and accurate dermatological care options:

  • We are here for you! Currently, our office is open Monday through Thursday with limited hours to provide dermatologic care to our patients as we understand skin conditions continue to arise. 
  • In addition to remaining open, we are now offering telemedicine appointments! Please contact the office to see which visit best fits your and your family's needs. Virtual visits are a great way to receive medication refills and discuss/treat many common skin conditions. The fee is $75-$100 for this convenient service.
  • We are following strict social distancing and sanitation guidelines in the office as directed by the American Academy of Dermatology and the CDC. We are sanitizing all surfaces before and after every patient visit to keep our patients as well as employees safe. 
  • In the event of any changes, we will contact all patients whose appointments would be affected to make sure you are rescheduled. We appreciate your patience and understanding during this time. 

* please note, sometimes the provider may determine that no prescription treatment is needed for certain cases. However, there will still be a cost for their medical advice. This is a secure and confidential visit.

 

Summer Is Long Over, Have You Had Your Skin Checked?

summer is long over have you had you skin checkedSkin diseases can be unsightly. But worse, they can be deadly. For the average person, it can be hard to know if a rash or bump on the skin is simply irritating or needs a professional look. Plus, during the summer months when the skin is more exposed, it is common for new skin conditions to emerge. The fall – when your skin is less exposed – is an ideal time to have your annual dermatology check-up.

Begin With Self Skin Exams

If you have never been to the dermatologist, you may need an initial appointment to discuss what to look for at home. Many dermatologists will educate their patients on how to do self exams. It is very important to know your body and do regular skin checks at home. Most often, problematic conditions are first discovered at home, not in a doctor’s office.

Same-Day Dermatology Appointments

same day dermatology appointmentsThese days we are used to same-day services in nearly all industries. However, the healthcare industry sometimes struggles with making same-day or even same week appointments. Unless it’s an emergency and you find yourself needing a trip to the emergency room, it can be difficult to see a doctor quickly.

If you’re worried about your health, or the health or your child or partner, waiting for an appointment can be painstaking. For dermatology, being able to get into the office on the same day is incredibly convenient. At APDKC, we offer patients the option to make same-day appointments.

We find that when patients are able to make an appointment on the same day, or at the very least, the same week, they are more likely to show up and take care of their health. Same day appointments eliminate last minute cancelations and no-shows. We understand that life happens and forgetfulness occurs. Additionally, we know being able to get into our office quickly increases patient satisfaction and increases new patients seeking out our offices. We are first and foremost in the business of dermatological health, but making our patients happy while we care for them is our goal.

Are You Ready For Some Football?!

are you ready for some footballWhat You Need To Consider About Skincare In The Fall

The pools may be closing and the weather may be getting a little cooler, but the sun is still out. It’s time to get out there and root on the Kansas City Chiefs! However, with football season here, so is another venue for sun exposure. Sunlight provides the human body with vitamin D, but overexposure to the sun can cause damage. Here is how you can protect yourself during the big game.

Use Sunscreen

One of the most effective ways to fight against ultraviolet rays is to be proactive about sunscreen application. You want to look for a sunscreen that has a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30-50. More is better when it comes to SPF. A sunscreen that has an SPF of 50 is able to block approximately 93% of ultraviolet rays. This is an important safeguard against skin cancer, which can result from extended sun exposure. Make sure that you are following the directions on the sunscreen bottle and apply liberally when you know you will be outside for extended periods of time. It is also recommended to reapply a water resistant sunscreen every 90 minutes to ensure adequate protection.

Adult and Pediatric Dermatology
4601 W. 109th St., Suite 116  •  Overland Park, Kansas 66211  •  913-469-1115