Lawrence A. Schiffman, D.O., FAOCD - Board Certified Dermatologist

Lawrence A. Schiffman, D.O., FAOCD - Board Certified Dermatologist

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May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month

Published May 23rd, 2018 by Sahil

May is skin cancer awareness month. Most everyone is aware that exposure to the sun may have some impact on the probability of developing skin cancer at some point in their life. The sun is often times a scapegoat when it comes to the disease. However, in reality, sunlight exposure is not the only risk factor associated with skin cancer. Genetics also can play a role, and traits making someone more susceptible to it can be passed on. Knowledge and early detection are key in identifying types of skin cancers, and may even save your life. This month we will cover some of the important things you need to know about skin cancer and treatments that are available.

Symptoms of Skin Cancer

To understand the symptoms of skin cancer, we must first ask, “What is skin cancer?” According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, skin cancer is a growth of abnormal skin cells that occurs when unrepaired damage to DNA in skin cells (often caused by ultraviolet radiation from sunlight or tanning beds) triggers mutations, or genetic defects, that lead the skin cells to multiply rapidly and form tumors. So what are the symptoms of skin cancer? Common belief is that skin cancer only occurs on skin that is most normally exposed to sunlight. There is a good deal of truth to this notion, but skin cancer can actually occur anywhere on your body’s epidermis. It most often takes the form of red or shiny white nodules, dark colored or crusted lesions, or brown colored spots that have recently appeared on your skin for seemingly no reason.

Types of Skin Cancer

There are actually a few different types of skin cancer; and each has a different behavior and appearance to watch out for. Actinic Keratoses (AK) appear as dry scaly patches or spots that are considered precancerous growths, and can progress into squamous cell carcinoma. Basal Cell Carcinoma (BCC) is the most common type of skin cancer. It appears as a flesh colored bump that resembles a pearl. Early diagnosis is important as it can spread to the surrounding tissue very rapidly. Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC) often appears as a red firm bump, scaly patch, or a sore that heals and reopens, and can grow very deep into the skin and cause disfigurement. Lasty, Melanoma is the deadliest form of skin cancer. It appears as a new dark spot on the skin (usually brown in color) and early diagnosis is very important to reduce risk of fatality as much as possible. Self-diagnosis and type of skin cancer are best ascertained by following the skin cancer ABCDE guide:

A: Asymmetry – Is the growth symmetrical or asymmetrical? If you draw a line through the center do you get two equal halves? If not, this could be an indicator of melanoma and you should consult your dermatologist as soon as possible.

B: Border – Benign moles are evenly bordered and often very rounded in shape. Malignant moles have more random borders and nebulous shape.

C: Color – Benign moles are often a uniform color, a single shade of brown. Malignant moles tend to contain multiple shades of brown and melanoma may even show red, white or blue colors.

D: Diameter – Benign moles are often smaller in diameter, whereas malignant moles are generally larger.

E: Evolving – Benign moles maintain the same shape and color over time. If a mole starts to change color, elevation, shape, or size or take on new symptoms such as bleeding, it is most likely a sign of a malignant mole.

Visit your Dermatologist in Miami, FL

As with any disease, early detection and treatment is critical. Skin cancer is often an unwanted surprise to the patients who suffer from it, so it is important to know your body. Give yourself regular examinations at home, while also keeping annual checkups with your dermatologist for full body examinations. Skin cancer signs should not be ignored. If you are suspicious of a mole for any reason, then it is better to have it checked out as soon as possible to ensure that, if it is malignant, it has as little time to spread as possible. Call our Doral, Aventura, or Miami Beach, FL location on 305.615.2440 or click here to schedule an appointment today!

5 Tips for Taking Care of Your Skin

Published December 26th, 2017 by Sahil

Taking care of your skin is one of the most important things you can do to retain a vibrant, healthy-looking tone and prevent skin disease. There are so many ways to safeguard your skin against potentially harmful conditions with only minor lifestyle changes; here are five tips that will help get you on your way to beautiful, healthy skin.

1. Be gentle

One of the simplest things you can do to take care of your skin is to treat it with kid gloves. This sounds like a no-brainer, but would you believe many of us are doing it wrong? Sometimes a long hot bath or hot tub session sounds like just the thing you need after a long day work or a stressful day right? While soothing, it is best to enjoy such creature comforts in moderation, or with cooler water. Hot water and strong soaps can remove the oil from your epidermis which can cause dryness, and, as a result, damage to your skin. Afterwards, gently pat or blot your skin dry with a towel thus leaving the remaining oil on your skin generally undisturbed. Once your body is completely dry, apply lotion to remoisturize your skin, leaving it revitalized and rejuvenated.

2. Stop smoking and drinking

We all know the oft-touted reasons to curb or eliminate smoking and drinking from our daily lives and diets. But did you know that these two things can also be really detrimental to your skin over time? Wrinkles tend to happen at earlier ages and run deeper in people who smoke and drink. Perhaps you have heard of smoker’s face? It is a condition in the facial skin where heavy crow’s feet develop around the eyes and droopy skin forms around the eyelids, generally attributed to long term smoking. Alcohol tends to rob nutrition from your body and cause dehydration, which can also cause many of the same symptoms in your skin. Eliminating alcohol and smoking from your routine (or all together) will dramatically help you to protect your youthful glow much farther into your adult life than those who continue an unhealthy frequency of these bad habits.

3. Eat a healthy diet

While OK in moderation, junk food is harmful to your skin as well. Since it is constantly repairing and regenerating itself, you’re skin needs all the nutrition it can get. Junk food typically lacks in things like: antioxidants, vitamins A, C, E, and vitamin B7 (biotin). 5-7 servings of fruits and vegetables a day are recommended for you to get sufficient amounts of these nutrients.

4. Stay Hydrated

As we mentioned earlier, keeping your skin properly lubricated is one of the most important things you can do to keep it healthy. Many of us don’t drink adequate amounts of water in our day-to-day lives, and that (as much as anything) can cause dry unhealthy skin as well. The latest guidelines for daily water intake indicate that women should take in about 91 ounces, and men, 125 ounces of water.

5. Manage stress

Last but not least, managing your stress does wonders for nearly every aspect of health. Your skin is no exception to this rule! Find ways to relax such as decaffeinated herbal tea, massage therapy, float spas, or relaxation music.

Skin Care Treatment in Miami, FL

We have trained professionals standing by to ensure that your dermatology needs are met with the utmost safety and professionalism! For more skin care tips contact us on 305.615.2440 or click here for a free consultation.

The Connection between Breast Cancer and Dermatology

Published October 31st, 2017 by Sahil

Throughout the years evidence has shown that there may be a correlation between breast cancer and melanoma in women. As early as 2004, an article published in the International Journal of Cancer states that women who have been diagnosed with (or successfully treated for) breast cancer were also 16 percent more likely to one day be diagnosed with melanoma. Conversely, women who were treated for melanoma at some point in their life, were 11 percent more likely to one day be diagnosed with breast cancer at some point. This correlation is what is known as a bi-directional link between the two diseases. Today, there have been a number of studies which lend validity to these earlier claims. According to a 2009 article published by the National Center for Biotechnological Information, not only does this bi-directional link exist between breast cancer and melanoma, but melanoma patients, who have a family history of breast cancer, should be referred to a breast clinic as soon as possible for an examination.

What Can You Do to Prevent Melanoma Cancer?

 

You may have heard you need to limit your sun exposure completely to avoid skin cancer. While that will help reduce the risk of skin cancer, yes, it is not entirely true. The sun gives us light, without it, life on this planet could not exist. Completely blocking it out of your everyday life is not only difficult, but often unnecessary for the average healthy person. Sunlight, in moderation, is actually beneficial for its ability to kick start your cells’ production of vitamin D, a vital nutrient your body needs to actually fight disease and keep your bones healthy. While it is true that recreational sun exposure and sunburn are causes of melanoma, the actual risk factor for melanoma is largely genetically related. Studies have shown that moderating your sunlight exposure is the leading preventative measure you can take to combat melanoma, but those who are genetically predisposed to it should be the most cautious of otherwise healthy people.

What Can You Do to Prevent Breast Cancer?

 

According to the Mayo Clinic, there are a number of different things you can do, and lifestyle changes you can integrate, that can help to prevent breast cancer. This list is not limited to (but does highlight) things like limiting your alcohol intake to less than one drink per day. Caution should be taken, however, as even a small amounts can still increase your risk. Another good idea for the prevention of breast cancer is to quit smoking, or to never start. While this is obvious for the overall health benefits to your body, studies show that smokers are also at higher risk for breast cancer, particularly with premenopausal women. Lastly, being physically will help you maintain a healthy weight and reduce your risk of breast cancer. The Department of Health and Human Services suggests adults should receive either 150 minutes of moderate anaerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity per week.

Dermatologist in Miami Florida

If you find anything that concerns you, contact Miami Skin Dr. Early detection of melanoma or skin cancer is key to being free of the tumor. Check out Miami Skin Dr to find out more.

How Do Facial Fillers Work?

Published September 28th, 2017 by Sahil

There are truly some remarkable benefits when it comes to facial fillers. These injectable fillers can restore skin and help alleviate signs of aging, with very little maintenance required. While there are varying levels of permanence to the different procedures offered today, we’re confident we can find the best facial filler for you.

How do facial fillers work?

As we mentioned earlier, facial fillers are injectable treatments introduced into the facial skin to reverse signs of aging & restore wrinkles to give a smoother, renewed appearance. With time and age, the buccal fat pad on your cheeks begins thin out and causes the skin to slouch more and more. Facial filler injections will lift the face back up, which in turn will reshape the skin to be smooth and toned again. Unlike Botox®, which merely relaxes the muscle tissue under a wrinkle, injectable fillers fill lines and creases with one of a selection of different substances, erasing distressed spots rapidly.

What types facial fillers do we offer?

Restylane®Restylane® is a new type of gel product that contains hyaluronic acid, a naturally occurring substance found in the body that is responsible for cell creation and migration. It is injected into troubled, aging locations on the facial skin to reduce the appearance of fine lines & wrinkles. It works by blending your body’s natural facial skin components to restore it to its original tone. Results may be seen for 6 to 9 months after treatment. Additionally, we currently offer 3 types of specialized Restylane® procedures:

 

Restylane® Refyne - is designed to help reduce skin folds, known as laugh lines (nasolabial folds and marionette lines), around your mouth. This product is designed with XpresHAn Technology and works perfectly to moderate your smile as desired.

 

Restylane® Silk is designed to treat your lips. A great number of our clients want smooth, subtle lips, and this new product delivers that with natural, yet stunning results.

 

Restylane® Lyft is a product that, in addition to removing lines and wrinkles, will also give your cheeks an attractive lift.

 

Belotero® – When injected into the skin, Belotero® expands much like a sponge which fills in the wrinkles and folds of all depressed areas. It can be used to treat lip lines, corner mouth lines, and chin wrinkles. Belotero can also be used on all skin types and colors. More importantly, it provides a guaranteed improved & defined skin tone that can last for approximately 6 months.

 

Radiesse® – Radiesse® is steadily becoming one of the leading anti-aging treatments currently on the market. Its main purpose is to treat wrinkles and deep lines around the mouth and nose (including marionette lines, smile lines, and nasolabial folds). The process is quick and relatively painless with minimal discomfort to be expected. Affected areas are treated with an injection of a calcium hydroxyl gel compound made up of phosphate and calcium ions that occur naturally in the body. The gel suspension then forms a connective tissue that works as a filler, reducing age lines, and leaving you with beautiful skin.

 

Juvederm®Juvederm® is a versatile injection that can reduce fine lines, wrinkles and facial scars (such as acne). Additionally, it also lifts sagging skin and can change the shape of the nose. Juvederm is noted for being able to restore a youthful and more round shape to the face. The procedure only takes minutes, and the results are long-lasting. We currently offer 3 types of Juvederm® treatment:

 

Juvederm® Ultra is softer than Juvederm® Ultra Plus, but the effects do not last as long (4-6 months)

 

Juvederm Ultra Plus® is for naturally thin or thinning lips. It can reduce lines and give a more natural, fuller look without requiring surgery. Results can last 6-9 months.

 

Juvederm VOLUMA® XC enhances volume to cheeks and nasolabial folds to smooth the skin better than other injectable fillers. It is also the first filler to enhance volume instantly and its effects can last up to 24 months. It also contains lidocaine to reduce discomfort during the injection process and is less likely to cause bruising.  

Facial fillers in Miami, FL

For more information about facial fillers click here or call us on 305.615.2440. Schedule an appointment today for younger, beautiful skin!

 

Topical Cannabis in Dermatology

Published August 8th, 2017 by Sahil

Topical Cannabis Could Help Your Skin

Skin problems such as acne, atopic dermatitis (AD), and psoriasis are prevalent and require various treatment methods to cure them. The high presence of these diseases has led to the introduction of topical marijuana as one of the methods that can treat skin problems. The use of cannabis based products has risen after the legalization of the herb in many states in the US. The legalization is mainly for medicinal reasons although some states allow cannabis use for recreational purposes.

Cannabinoids are components of the cannabis plant that can treat some maladies on the skin. The nature of cannabinoids improves their absorption by human bodies, and that is why they have an effect when consumed by people in whatever form. The human body produces its cannabinoids through its endocannabinoid system which have been found to affect appetite, skin sensitivity, and memory. When people consume plant cannabinoids, they get absorbed into the blood stream resulting in better functioning of the endocannabinoid system.

Topical Cannabinoids and Treating Skin Problems

The skin's vulnerability to harsh weather conditions can lead to health problems. Cannabis cream can address the problems by applying it to the affected areas of the skin. The cannabinoids contain multiple anti-inflammatory properties that boost the healing process of skin ailments. Topical cannabis could lower the time it takes to heal a wound using ordinary treatment options.

Topical marijuana has antibiotic properties that help the healing of burns, rashes, and other skin problems. The products developed from the cannabis plant are ideal for various uses even though more research about them is being undertaken. Some of the ailments the products have been found to heal include analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects. It has also been found to have a relaxing effect on muscles and other body tissue.

Cannabis cream has many uses for humans which explain the reason more people use it. The products are available in the form of balms, sprays, oils, and salves. You can select the form that suits your lifestyle. Topical treatment for skin cancer is another popular use of cannabis products because many people suffer from the problem and require a cure.

Why Choose Miami Skin Dr for Topical Treatment

Miami Skin Dr is a leading practice with a state-certified physician capable of submitting qualifying patients’ information to the state of Florida. Once a qualifying patient submits the necessary forms and payment to the State, the State of Florida will then issue a medical cannabis ID card. After receiving a medical cannabis ID card, patients can then visit any state-approved dispensary to receive their order of medical cannabis, including topical creams.

Miami Skin Dr is a trusted and dependable medical cannabis doctor who is licensed to recommend medical cannabis as a treatment modality for patients who qualify.

The experts at the clinic, led by Dr. Lawrence A. Schiffman, make sure they match the medical symptoms with the right modality.

For medical marijuana evaluations in Miami, FL click here. Alternatively, call us on 305.615.2440.

For Patients