Dermatology is the branch of medicine dealing with the skin, nails, hair and its diseases. It is a specialty with both medical and surgical aspects. A dermatologist treats diseases, in the widest sense, and some cosmetic problems of the skin, scalp, hair, and nails.
Dermatologists have been leaders in the field of cosmetic surgery. Some dermatologists complete fellowships in surgical dermatology. Many are trained in their residency on the use of botulinum toxin, fillers, and laser surgery. Some dermatologists perform cosmetic procedures including liposuction, blepharoplasty, and face lifts. Most dermatologists limit their cosmetic practice to minimally invasive procedures. Despite an absence of formal guidelines from the American Board of Dermatology, many cosmetic fellowships are offered in both surgery and laser medicine.
A dermatolopathologist is a pathologist or dermatologist who specializes in the pathology of the skin. This field is shared by dermatologists and pathologists. Usually a dermatologist or pathologist will complete one year of dermatopathology fellowship. This usually includes six months of general pathology, and six months of dermatopathology. Alumni of both specialties can qualify as dermatopathologists. At the completion of a standard residency in dermatology, many dermatologists are also competent at dermatopathology. Some dermatopathologists qualify to sit for their examinations by completing a residency in dermatology and one in pathology.
This field specializes in the treatment of immune-mediated skin diseases such as lupus, bullous pemphigoid, pemphigus vulgaris, and other immune-mediated skin disorders. Specialists in this field often run their own immunopathology labs. Therapies provided by dermatologists include, but are not restricted to the following: Cosmetic filler injections Hair removal with laser or other modalities Hair transplantation a cosmetic procedure practiced by many dermatologists. Intralesional treatment with steroid or chemotherapy. Laser therapy for both the management of birth marks, skin disorders (like vitiligo), tattoo removal, and cosmetic resurfacing and rejuvenation. Photodynamic therapy for the treatment of skin cancer and precancerous growths. Phototherapy including the use of narrowband UVB, broadband UVB, psoralen and UVB. Tattoo removal with laser. Tumescent liposuction liposuction was invented by a gynecologist.
A dermatologist (Dr. Jeffrey A. Klein) adapted the procedure to local infusion of dilute anesthetic called tumescent liposuction. This method is now widely practiced by dermatologists, plastic surgeons and gynecologists. Cryosurgery for the treatment of warts, skin cancers, and other dermatosis.
Radiation therapy although rarely practiced by dermatologists, many dermatologist continue to provide radiation therapy in their office. Vitiligo surgery Including procedures like autologous melanocyte transplant, suction blister grafting and punch grafting. Allergy testing Patch testing for contact dermatitis. Systemic therapies including antibiotics, immunomodulators, and novel injectable products. Topical therapies dermatologists have the best understanding of the numerous products and compounds used topically in medicine.