Medical & Surgical Procedures
Medical and Surgical Dermatology in Columbus, Ohio
At Eastside Dermatology, we offer a comprehensive menu of medical and surgical dermatology options, from annual skin exams and the treatment of common skin conditions, to skin cancer treatment and Mohs surgery. Dr. Alan Parks and his team have extensive experience in the procedures and treatments listed below, and they can help you with all of your skin care needs.
- Actinic Keratosis
- Nail Disease
- Hair & Scalp Conditions
- Abnormal Moles
- Skins Cancers
- Molluscum Contagiosum
- Inflammatory & Infectious Skin Conditions
- Contact Dermatitis
- Skin Discolorations
- Age Spots & Freckles
- Photodynamic Therapy (PDT)
Though commonly thought to only be a condition that plagues teenagers, acne can arise in adults as well. There are many factors contributing to acne, including bacteria, stress, medications, and hormones. There are a variety of treatments that are tailored to the severity and the underlying cause. Our office has products for purchase that our doctors use in conjunction with prescription medications to treat acne.
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This is typically described as red, dry, itchy skin. There are many causes of eczema. It can be secondary to contact with an irritant, an allergen, or simply a response to a change in temperature/humidity. Our doctors prescribe medications and also recommend products, which our office carries, to prevent/treat dry skin and help restore normal skin function.
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A non-contagious inflammatory disorder that typically affects the skin, but can also attack the joints. Multiple treatment options are available depending on the severity, from topical products to systemic treatment with injection/intravenous infusion medications (i.e. the biologics).
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A condition that affects men and women of all races and most often presents with flushing and acne across the central face. The condition is managed with topical and oral medications, non-irritating cleansers, daily sun protection, and further prevention of triggers for rosacea. We even carry a Laser that is used to target the broken blood vessels on the face in an effort to restore normal skin tone and color.
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These lesions are best described as pre-cancers occurring on sun-exposed sites that have the potential of turning into skin cancer (i.e. Sqauamous Cell Carcinoma). Multiple forms of treatment are available including Liquid Nitrogen (Freezing), topical prescription medications, and PhotoDynamic Therapy. Patient education on sun-protection is always stressed for maintenance and prevention of further damage.
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Nails can be a good indicator on how the rest of the body is functioning. Changes in the nail could be due to infections (fungal or bacterial), diet, vitamin deficiencies, or even cardiac/kidney/liver disease.
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Hair & Scalp Conditions
- Alopecia – This is the generic term for hair loss. There are numerous types and causes of alopecia, with the specific type determining the course of treatment.
- Seborrheic Dermatitis (i.e. Dandruff) – An inflammatory disorder of the scalp, which can also affect other body sites, which presents with redness, itching and flaking. This can generally be treated with topical medications and/or shampoos.
View Hair & Scalp Issues on our dermatology page
Though an abnormal mole (a dysplastic nevus) is not cancerous, it has a greater chance of turning into cancer (i.e. melanoma). Unusual moles can be detected by followed the ABCD’s of abnormal moles:
- A: Asymmetry: visually divide the mole in half, and one side should look like the other side. If not, it is considered asymmetrical and may be a red flag.
- B: Border irregularity: moles should have even, round, smooth borders. They should not be jagged or irregular.
- C: Color: should be uniform in color, as in all light brown or dark brown. Moles that are atypical often have combinations of coloring, most importantly black.
- D: Diameter: most abnormal moles are greater than the tip of a pencil eraser (about 6mm). However, this is not a hard and fast rule, so it is best to have your moles checked by a dermatologist.
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There are many precautions one can take to lower the risks of getting skin cancer. It is known that prolonged exposure to the sun or indoor tanning can vastly increase the chances of skin cancer. Using a sun block with both UVA and UVB protection on a daily basis is a great start. Other preventative measures would be wearing wide-brimmed hats and protective clothing, and avoiding the sun between the peak intensity hours of 10am – 4pm. All forms of skin cancer can be detected early with annual skin checks by a dermatologist.
- Basal Cell Carcinoma- The most common and least invasive form of skin cancer. Once diagnosed with a biopsy it is usually removed surgically, all done with local anesthesia. For cancers that fit certain criteria (i.e cosmetic location, large size or recurrent tumor), these are best treated with Mohs micrographic surgery.
- Squamous Cell Carcinoma- Though a more invasive form of skin cancer, it is still highly treatable. This is diagnosed also with a skin biopsy, and is then removed surgically. Treatment is similar to basal cell carcinoma.
- Malignant Melanoma – Though not as common as basal cell or squamous cell skin cancer, melanoma is on the rise and is more deadly. There are many subtypes of melanoma, with certain types having a greater likelihood of spreading (metastasizing) to other body sites if not detected early. Once melanoma is diagnosed through a skin biopsy, a thorough workup and treatment course is begun. All patients with a history of melanoma should have annual skin checks not only in themselves, but also in 1st degree family members, as there is a genetic component to this form of skin cancer.
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A common skin infection with many subtypes, each caused by different strains of the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV). Warts are contagious. Multiple forms of treatment are utilized, including freezing with liquid nitrogen, surgical scraping, injecting chemotherapeutic agents, and using a laser to destroy the wart.
- Gential Warts – Caused by a specific strain of HPV, are often treated by a dermatologist. These are a sexually transmitted strain of the Human Papilloma Virus. Its treatment often includes freezing the warts with liquid nitrogen or applying a topical prescription.
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Molluscum contagiosum is a viral infection of the skin that is spread through skin to skin contact. Although not always necessary, treatment of molluscum contagiosum may involve surgical scraping (curettage), freezing with liquid nitrogen (cryotherapy), or removal through heat (cautery).
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Inflammatory & Infectious Skin Conditions
Bacteria, viruses, and fungus make their way into an open wound or break in the skin and can cause many different forms of skin infections. These are often diagnosed with the naked eye, but often require a laboratory culture to determine the specific organism. Most are treated with type-specific medications (oral and topical).
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Caused by the skin coming in contact with either an irritant or allergen, producing a red, itchy skin response (see eczema above). Our office uses patch testing to determine the specific causes of allergic contact dermatitis, with a panel of 65 common allergens used as a screening test.
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- Hyperpigmentation – a darkening of the skin which can be permanent or temporary and the result of sun damage, inflammation, or skin injuries.
- Melasma – Patches of darker pigmentation typically occurring on the face. Can be caused by changes in hormone levels (i.e. the mask of pregnancy). Treatments can consist of topical bleaching agents, sunblocks, and lasers/chemical peels.
- Vitiligo – A condition that produces patches of depigmentation (absence or loss of pigment).
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Age Spots & Freckles
Though these spots are non-cancerous, they should be examined as a part of an annual skin check. These can of sometimes obscure suspicious lesions.
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Photodynamic Therapy (PDT)
Photodynamic therapy is a recently approved development in the treatment of sun damaged pre-cancerous zones and spots called actinic keratoses. It is performed with a topical photosensitizing agent called Levulan (5-aminolevulinic acid) that is activated with the correct wavelength of light emitted from a BLU-U® light machine. (This is known as “ALA/PDT treatment.”) With a series of treatments, precancerous lesions can be melted away and one can reduce much of the sun damage that predisposes people to the development of skin cancer. PDT can have cosmetic benefits as well. The signs of sun damage, some fine lines, and blotchy pigmentation have also been shown to improve because of the positive effects of Levulan and PDT. ALA/PDT treatment can also minimize pores and reduce oil glands, effectively improving acne vulgaris and Rosacea. PDT has also been shown to improve the appearance of acne scarring.