Common Skin Conditions – Acne/Eczema/Rosacea/Psoriasis/Melasma – The Woodlands, TX*

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About Common Conditions

Dermatology is a specialty with both medical aspects and cosmetic benefits. Our board-certified dermatologist, Dr. Anita A. Gill, treats mild to severe conditions and/or diseases in the widest sense of the skin, scalp, hair, and nails. She approaches dermatology as more than a problem with your skin as she knows there is an array of possible medical conditions that may be contributing to your condition. By conducting a thorough examination, asking about your overall health and family history, and discussing some of your lifestyle habits, Dr. Anita Gill will help you determine the best course of action to take with your skin. 

Many common skin conditions (psoriasis, rosacea, eczema, and more) that we treat at The Gill Center for Plastic Surgery and Dermatology are managed with great care if they are not curable. We offer world-class skin care treatments at our on-site Firenze Derm Spa and medical-grade product options to manage skin conditions, like acne, rosacea, and more at home. Our patients of all ages can also take advantage of our laser and cosmetic injectable treatments if desired. When it comes to treating your skin, it is important to choose a specialist who knows the skin inside and out. To meet and have your skin examined by our board-certified dermatologist, please contact us today and receive your evaluation in a professional, quality-oriented setting at The Gill Center for Plastic Surgery and Dermatology.

Types of Skin Conditions

Acne

Many individuals suffer from emotionally distressing blemishes on their skin. Pimples are commonly found on the face, chest, shoulders, and back. People of all ages can be afflicted with whiteheads, blackheads, inflamed papules (red lesions), nodules, and cysts on or deep within their skin. Seeking treatment early is beneficial to reduce permanent scarring, pain, and spread of an infection. Certain factors, such as diet, lifestyle, skin type, age, hormones fluctuations, and co-existing conditions, will affect what type of acne is present. During your acne consultation, Dr. Anita Gill will assess the skin for problem areas, identify the type of acne, and plan for a vigorous treatment plan to get the acne under control.

Acne appears when our pores become clogged with dead skin cells. Normally, these dead skin cells rise to the surface of the skin to shed the cells. However, in acne, the body starts making lots of sebum (oil) and the dead skin cells stick together inside the pore. When the pore is clogged with dead skin cells, this attracts bacteria named Propionibacterium acnes. This bacteria flourishes in an oily environment and multiplies very quickly. With bacteria trapped in the pore, your skin becomes red and tender. There are many different prescription medications for acne. Dr. Anita Gill is very familiar with these medications and will customize a treatment plan based on your health history and exam. Most treatments for acne take time. It often takes 6 – 8 weeks for acne to improve after you initiate treatment. Some medications and/or dermatological services performed on the skin may cause acne to get worse before it gets better. Isotretinoin is used in cases of severe acne refractory to treatment.

Eczema

Eczema is a chronic skin condition that involves red, irritated, and itchy patches of skin. It is common in childhood but may not manifest until later years. Severe cases may result in blisters and cracked skin. There is no real definitive cause of this condition, but we do know that it presents after an exposure or trigger, such as seasonal allergies, a stressful event, an overexposure to the sun or pollution, or in patients with an intolerant immune system. The contemporary medical opinion suggests a combination of genetic and environmental factors. Also known as dermatitis, the most common types of eczema are:

  • Atopic dermatitis – An itchy inflamed skin
  • Contact dermatitis – A skin rash caused by contact with certain substances
  • Stasis dermatitis – An inflamed skin caused by an accumulation of fluid in the lower legs
  • Seborrheic dermatitis – A reddened skin with scaly patches, usually on the scalp
  • Nummular dermatitis – A rash or sores shaped like a coin
  • Dermatitis herpetiformis – A very itchy skin rash, accompanied with bumps and blisters

The treatment of atopic dermatitis requires the reduction of the exposure to known triggers when possible, regular use of moisturizers, and intermittent topical steroids. You can also limit bath or shower time to less than ten minutes, use a mild soap, and put on lotion in your daily self-care routine. In some cases, you may benefit from prescribed medications, like corticosteroids, antihistamines, hydrocortisone, topical calcineurin inhibitors, and antibiotics. For longstanding and severe eczema, we may consider systemic medications.

ROSACEA

If you have persistent rosacea, which is a common genetic and/or environmental skin disease, then it turns the skin on the central part of the face a shade of red or pink. As rosacea worsens, it will spread to the scalp, neck, ears, chest, and eyes. The majority of patients we see for rosacea are most often aged 30 – 60, have fair skin, and blue eyes. This flush or blush appearance can cause more than discoloration. Characteristics of rosacea include persistent redness, prominent blood vessels, red bumps that look like acne, dry texture, and flaky skin. Most patients will say their skin is aggravated by sun exposure, emotional stress, alcohol consumption, and spicy foods. Patients with rosacea will say their skin is sensitive and may have red or sore eyes. Finding a trusted dermatologist to manage your condition is important to the health of your skin, slow the progression of rosacea, and prevent some scarring. Treatment options include a combination of topical creams, lotions, gels, foams, or washes that contain antibiotics, azelaic acid, metronidazole, sulfacetamide, and brimonidine. Faster results may be seen with oral antibiotics and laser therapy. We combine rosacea creams (prescriptions), gentle skin care, and photo facials to help with flushing and small dilated capillaries/blood vessels.

PSORIASIS

Psoriasis is a common, chronic skin disease that develops when a person’s immune system sends faulty signals that tell skin cells to grow too quickly. The body has difficulty shedding these excess skin cells, and they pile up on the surface of the skin, causing patches of psoriasis to appear. It can cause red, thick scaly patches on the elbows, knees, trunk, scalp, and buttocks, although it can occur anywhere on the skin. The rash of psoriasis goes through cycles of improving and worsening. Psoriasis comes in many forms, and each differs in severity, duration, location, shape, and pattern. The most common form is called plaque psoriasis.

Psoriasis Treatment

Treatment of psoriasis can improve a person’s quality of life and some people may see their skin completely clear of psoriasis. Although there is currently no cure for psoriasis, there are multiple treatments available. Your dermatologist may prescribe topical steroids, synthetic Vitamin D, analogues, retinoids, tar or anthralin. Other treatments include light treatment, excimer laser, oral medications, injectable medications (biologics), and other systemic medications. Psoriasis can have a significant impact on a patient’s self-esteem. Treatment can help greatly with some of the social effects of psoriasis.

Further, psoriasis has most recently been recognized as a systemic (whole body) disease relating to inflammation. Psoriasis patients have a higher risk than the general population of developing a metabolic syndrome (obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol) and heart disease. Psoriasis patients should be enrolled in a smoking cessation program, as smoking makes psoriasis worse.

MELASMA

Melasma, also referred to as chloasma, happens when uneven patches of darkened skin show up on the face or forearms. These complex, chronic tan or brownish spots typically occur evenly around the brow, cheeks, nose, or upper lip. The appearance of melasma sets it apart from other skin conditions that lead to dark patches on the skin. Melasma is very common between the ages of 20 – 40 and is found more frequently in females. It may be due to sun damage or from hormonal fluctuations during pregnancy or menopause. The hyperpigmentation is a result of the overproduction of melanin by the pigment cells of the skin. This condition may be upsetting and can lead to considerable emotional distress.

YOUR APPOINTMENT

During a dermatological consultation, you will speak with Dr. Anita Gill and her medical team about the state of your skin health. You can always expect that your overall health to be of the utmost importance to her and her staff. When you make your first appointment, it will be scheduled in a timely manner. She not only values you as a patient but understands that your time is important. Upon arrival, you will be greeted warmly by our front office staff, who will do their best to help you feel as comfortable as if you were at home. If you fill out your patient forms at home and bring them in, it will make the process run even more efficiently. However, if you need assistance, we would be delighted to assist you in filling out the paperwork. Also, we provide our medical and aesthetic dermatology services on a fee-for-service basis. If you have any questions about our fee schedule, please ask in advance of your appointment.

What to Expect

After your consultation, Dr. Anita Gill will design a treatment plan based on your individual needs. She may prescribe one or more of the following dermatological solutions:

  • At-home skin care products, sunscreens, and cosmetics
  • Blue light therapy
  • Chemical peels
  • HydraFacial
  • Laser skin resurfacing
  • Medical-grade facial cleansers and moisturizers 
  • Oral medications
  • Topical therapies for brightening (such as niacinamide, soy, antioxidants, retinoids, azelaic/kojic/alpha hydroxy/glycolic acids, and more)

There are many different treatments that Dr. Anita Gill may choose for your condition. As everyone's skin is different, she will present you with a customized plan to treat and manage your skin's condition.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is psoriasis genetic?
If you have a family member with psoriasis, you have a better chance of developing this skin condition. Most people get psoriasis between the ages of 15 – 30 years; however, it may develop anytime. Triggers of psoriasis include a stressful event, strep throat, certain medications, cold weather, and trauma to the skin.

How long does it really take to clear up acne?
Most treatments for acne take time. It often takes 6 – 8 weeks for acne to improve after you initiate treatment. Some medical-grade skin care products or in-house services may cause acne to get worse before it gets better. 

Do you screen for skin cancer in an assessment?
You can have a skin cancer screening at The Gill Center for Plastic Surgery and Dermatology if you suspect that a mole or a growth looks different. Remember the ABCDEs of skin cancer: asymmetrical shape, border, color, diameter, and evolution. The area of the skin in question will have an irregular shape and border that will not be symmetrical, be multicolored, bigger than six mm, and will continue to change. Please make an appointment if these characteristics describe your problem area.

How can I combat melasma in between treatments?
You may see patches of brown spots (especially on the upper lip) more often when you spend too much time in the sun. At Firenze Derm Spa, we have our in-office treatments and a wide variety of brighteners and lighteners skin care products for you to continue to use at home. We customize treatments with Vitamin C serum, azelaic acid, and or kojic acid, plus hydroquinone at night. Often, we recommend lights peels in the summer and a monthly HydraFacial. Once improved, remember, melasma always wants to return so you must stay on your sunscreen and skin care regimen. Colorescience® Sunforgettable mineral powder and hats are a must, too.

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If you have concerns about your skin and are not sure how to treat it, we can assist you at The Gill Center for Plastic Surgery and Dermatology. Our amazing staff will sit down with you to discuss all the questions you have about acne, rosacea, eczema, or any dilemma your skin is presenting and needs compassionate care. Dr. Anita Gill can discuss ways and products to keep your skin looking radiant and younger for longer with proper skin care. Request your consultation in The Woodlands, TX today.

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*Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person. Images may contain models.