South County Dermatology

Posts for: August, 2019

By Robert K Dyer, MD
August 28, 2019
Category: Dermatology
Tags: Psoriasis  

Psoriasis is an immune condition that affects the skin, causing skin cells to multiple up to 10 times faster than normal. As a result, skin cells buildup, creating rough, scaly patches on the elbows, knees, scalp, and back (known as plaques). If you have psoriasis we know how important it is to have a treatment plan that can reduce plaques and prevent flare-ups. Here’s how our East Greenwich, RI, dermatologists Dr. Robert Dyer and Dr. Vincent Criscione can help.

Treatment Options for Psoriasis

While there is currently no cure for psoriasis there are many treatment options available to you to help get your condition under control. Of course, finding the right treatment isn’t always easy and it will take some time to figure out what works best for you.

What works well for someone may not work well for you. Your East Greenwich, RI, skin doctor can help you create the best treatment plan to reduce and even eliminate your symptoms.

Common treatment options include:

Topical treatments: this includes steroid creams, coal-tar shampoos, prescription retinoids, and products containing salicylic acid

Phototherapy: small doses of sunlight can actually improve psoriasis lesions. Light therapies include:

  • Narrow-band UVB therapy
  • UVB light
  • PUVA (or UVA light)

Oral medications: such as retinoids and biologics may also be prescribed. Biologics are used to control your immune response and is used for treating severe, treatment-resistant arthritis, as well as psoriatic arthritis.

Symptoms of Psoriasis

If you have psoriasis the most common symptom is the development of thick, scaly patches on the skin. There may be redness, swelling or soreness around the plaques and the patches may crack or bleed. There may be some itching or burning present, as well. Depending on the type of psoriasis you have you may also experience joint swelling or pain.

Psoriasis Triggers

While the immune system is to blame for your symptoms, there are also triggers that can cause a flare-up or exacerbate symptoms. Common triggers include:

  • Stress
  • Cold weather
  • Certain infections (e.g. strep throat)
  • Certain medications (e.g. lithium; beta-blockers)
  • Skin trauma (e.g. burns; cuts)
  • Smoking
  • Alcohol

South County Dermatology provides comprehensive dermatological care to patients of all ages in Narragansett, Westerly, Barrington, and East Greenwich, RI. If you are experiencing symptoms of psoriasis call our dermatology office today.

By Robert K Dyer, MD
August 16, 2019
Category: Dermatology

Sun DamageToo much exposure to sunlight can be harmful to your skin. Dangerous ultraviolet B (UVB) and ultraviolet A (UVA) rays damage skin, which leads to premature wrinkles, skin cancer and other skin problems. People with excessive exposure to UV radiation are at greater risk for skin cancer than those who take careful precautions to protect their skin from the sun.

Sun Exposure Linked to Cancer

Sun exposure is the most preventable risk factor for all skin cancers, including melanoma. To limit your exposure to UV rays, follow these easy steps.

  • Avoid the mid-day sun, as the sun's rays are most intense during 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Remember that clouds do not block UV rays.
  • Use extra caution near water, snow and sand.
  • Avoid tanning beds and sun lamps which emit UVA and UVB rays.
  • Wear hats and protective clothing when possible to minimize your body's exposure to the sun.
  • Generously apply a broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen with a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of at least 30 to your exposed skin. Re-apply every two hours and after swimming or sweating.
  • Wear sunglasses to protect your eyes and area around your eyes.

Risks Factors

Everyone's skin can be affected by UV rays. People with fair skin run a higher risk of sunburns. Aside from skin tone, factors that may increase your risk for sun damage and skin cancer include:

  • Previously treated for cancer
  • Family history of skin cancer
  • Several moles
  • Freckles
  • Typically burn before tanning
  • Blond, red or light brown hair

If you detect unusual moles, spots or changes in your skin, or if your skin easily bleeds, make an appointment with our practice. Changes in your skin may be a sign of skin cancer. With early detection from your dermatologist, skin cancers have a high cure rate and response to treatment. Additionally, if you want to reduce signs of aged skin, seek the advice of your dermatologist for a variety of skin-rejuvenating treatment options.

By Robert K Dyer, MD
August 13, 2019
Category: Dermatology
Tags: Botox  

Your skin doctor at South County Dermatology in East Greenwich offers a number of aesthetic treatments that can make your skin look great. One of the most popular of these cosmetic enhancements comes in the form of Botox, an injectable protein that suppresses the action of certain facial muscles in order to smooth out fine lines and wrinkles. If you have been considering Botox, read on to learn how your dermatologists, Dr. Robert Dyer and Dr. Vincent Criscione, use this treatment to rejuvenate their patients’ looks!

How does Botox work? 
Botox Cosmetic is a super-pure form of the botulism toxin. During treatment, a miniscule amount of this protein is injected into the skin in order to both limit the action of facial muscles and make the skin look less lined and aged. Typical areas that experience dynamic wrinkles are around the eyes (crow's feet), between the nose and mouth, between the eyebrows (glabellar lines), and across the forehead.

Who can receive Botox treatments?
Healthy adults ages 65 and under can. To begin, Dr. Dyer or Dr. Criscione will inspect your skin and review your medical history before recommending any medical or aesthetic skin treatment, including Botox.

Are there any side effects?
Some patients feel a slight stinging sensation as they receive the injections. Also, some experience very mild redness, tenderness and limited bruising on the injection site. All-in-all, the treatments are quick (taking about half an hour), comfortable, and patients return to their usual routines right away.

Are the results permanent?
No, the results maximize in about two days after treatment and then continue to work for up to six months. At this time, they may be re-done as needed.

Does Botox have other medical applications?
Yes, it does. Botox was first approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2002 for cosmetic uses, and since then, the FDA also has approved it for medical conditions such as migraine headaches in adults, strabismus (cross-eyes), TMD (jaw joint dysfunction), hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating), and overactive bladder, among others.

The look you want made easy
If you're ready for a change, contact South County Dermatology for an aesthetic skin consultation. We have four locations: East Greenwich, Narragansett, Westerly, and Barrington. Call the office team at (401) 471-3376.