Our dermatology providers specialize in diseases of the skin and hair. Examples of other skin conditions treated at NW Dermatology Institute include:
Autoimmune Skin Conditions
On a basic level, autoimmune disease occurs because the body’s natural defenses — the immune system — attack the body’s own healthy tissue. When the body senses danger from a virus or infection, the immune system kicks into gear and attacks it. This is called an immune response. Sometimes, healthy cells and tissues are caught up in this response, resulting in autoimmune disease. Autoimmune disease can affect different cells including hair, pigment, joints, and skin. Genetics plays a role in the development of autoimmune disease. Treatment is based on suppressing the immune response and decreasing inflammation.
Acne is a skin condition that occurs when your hair follicles become plugged with oil and dead skin cells. It often causes whiteheads, blackheads or pimples, and usually appears on the face, forehead, chest, upper back and shoulders. Acne is most common among teenagers, though it affects people of all ages, specifically adult women. Treatment is directed at decreasing inflammation, preventing follicle plugging, and killing bacteria in the follicles. Learn more about NW Dermatology Institute's acne treatments.
Cysts are noncancerous small bumps beneath the skin. They may appear as a tiny blackhead plugging the central opening of the cyst. Cysts may have a thick, yellow, smelly material that sometimes drains. Cysts can occasionally become inflamed or infected causing redness, swelling, and tenderness in the area. They can appear anywhere on the skin but are most common on the face, neck, and trunk. Cysts are typically not harmful and do not need to be removed. If bothersome, they may be removed by excision or incision and drainage procedure, and injected steroids may sometimes be used to decrease inflammation.
Eczema, also known as atopic dermatitis, typically presents as dry, red, itchy skin which can be severe in nature. The patches may occur on the hands, feet, ankles, wrists, neck, upper chest, eyelids, inside the bend of the elbows and knees, and in infants, the face and scalp. Atopic dermatitis most often begins before age 5 and may persist into adolescence and adulthood. For some people, it flares periodically and then clears up for a time, even for several years. It most often occurs in people who have seasonal allergies and asthma. Treatment is directed at increasing moisture in the skin, repairing skin barrier, and decreasing inflammation.
Excessive sweating, also known as hyperhidrosis, that's not necessarily related to heat or exercise. Hyperhidrosis may cause so much sweating that it soaks through clothes or drips off hands or feet. Besides disrupting normal daily activities, this type of heavy sweating can cause social anxiety and embarrassment. Treatments are available that can significantly improve quality of life.
Folliculitis is a common skin condition in which hair follicles become inflamed. At first, it may look like small red bumps or white-headed pimples around hair follicles. Folliculitis most commonly occurs on the chest, back, neck, scalp and can be exacerbated by shaving or waxing.
Fungal Skin Infections
Fungal skin infections, also known as tinea, include ringworm, athlete's foot, and jock itch. These infections are usually not serious, but they can be uncomfortable. The infection can be spread by touching an infected person, from damp surfaces such as shower floors, or even from a pet.
Hives, also known as urticaria, are red, itchy welts that can be due to allergy, infection, food, medications, and stress. The welts vary in size and appear and fade repeatedly as the reaction runs its course. The condition is considered chronic hives if the welts appear for more than six weeks and recur frequently over months or years
Pigment alteration in the skin can occur due to medications, sun exposure, and inflammation. Pigment change in the skin can also result from the healing process of wounds and minor skin infections where discoloration, known as post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation remains. Generally, the darker the complexion, the darker the post-inflammatory pigment will be. Learn more about NW Dermatology Institute's pigmentation treatment.
A keloid is an enlarged scar caused by an excess protein (collagen) in the skin during healing. Keloids often are lumpy or ridged. The scar rises after an injury or condition has healed, such as a surgical incision or acne. Keloids aren't harmful and don't need treatment but steroids may be injected to decrease itching or pain and the appearance of the scar.
There are two types of keratoses: seborrheic keratoses and actinic keratoses. Seborrheic keratoses are noncancerous skin lesions that appear as waxy brown, black, or tan growths. They are associated with genetics and sun exposure. Actinic keratoses are rough, scaly patches that develop from years of exposure to the sun. They most commonly occur on the face, lips, ears, back of hands, forearms, scalp or neck. They are pre-cancerous lesions that have a potential to turn into Squamous Cell Carcinoma if not treated.
A lipoma is a lump under the skin that occurs due to an overgrowth of fat cells. Doctors consider lipomas to be benign tumors, which means that they are non-cancerous growths. However, people may wish to remove a lipoma that causes pain, complications, or other symptoms.
Lupus is a systemic autoimmune disease that occurs when your body's immune system attacks your own tissues and organs. Inflammation caused by lupus can affect many different body systems — including your joints, skin, kidneys, blood cells, brain, heart, and lungs. Discoid lupus is an autoimmune disease that affects the skin only.
Milia are small, bump-like cysts found under the skin. They are usually 1 to 2 millimeters (mm) in size. They form when skin flakes or keratin, a protein, become trapped under the skin. Milia most often appear on the face, commonly around the eyelids and cheeks, though they can occur anywhere.
Moles, also known as nevi, are spots on the skin, most of which are present by age 20. They are usually round with a sharply defined border and uniform color. They may be flat or raised. Moles occur when pigment cells in the skin grow in a cluster instead of being spread throughout the skin.
Molluscum contagiosum is an infection caused by a poxvirus. The result of the infection is usually a benign, mild skin disease characterized by growths that may appear anywhere on the body. Within 6-12 months, Molluscum contagiosum typically resolves without scarring but may take as long as 4 years.
Dandruff, also known as seborrheic dermatitis, is a skin condition that causes itchy, scaly patches, and red skin, mainly on the scalp. It can also occur on oily areas of the body, such as the face, upper chest, and back. The exact cause is unknown but it may be related to an irregular immune response to a yeast found in the oil secretion on the skin called malassezia.
Shingles, also known as herpes zoster, is caused by the reactivation of varicella-zoster virus — the same virus that causes chickenpox. Shingles typically presents as a painful rash that develops on one side of the face or body. The rash consists of blisters that typically scab over in 7 to 10 days and fully clears up within 2 to 4 weeks. Other symptoms of shingles can include fever, headache, chills, and pain that persists after the rash resolves.
Skin cancer is the most common of all cancer types. More than 3.5 million people are diagnosed with skin cancer in the United States every year. Skin cancer occurs from unrepaired DNA damage that leads to mutations of skin cells most often related to ultraviolet (UV) exposure from the sun and tanning beds. These mutations cause the skin cells to multiply rapidly and form malignant tumors.
There are multiple different pathogens that can cause skin infections. Bacteria cause cellulitis, impetigo, and streptococcal/ staphylococcal (staph) infections. Viruses cause shingles, warts, and herpes simplex. Fungi cause athlete's foot and yeast infections. Parasites cause body lice, head lice, and scabies.
Tinea versicolor is a common yeast infection of the skin, in which flaky discolored patches appear on the chest and back. The infection is caused by the fungus Malassezia furfur. This fungus occurs naturally on the skin and can multiply in a yeast-like fashion, leading to tinea versicolor.
Vitiligo is a disease that causes loss of skin color in patches. The condition can affect the skin on any part of the body. The color of hair and skin is determined by melanin. Vitiligo occurs when cells that produce melanin die or stop functioning. Vitiligo affects people of all skin types, but it may be more noticeable in people with darker skin.
Common warts are caused by a virus and are transmitted by touch. It can take a wart as long as two to six months to develop after your skin has been exposed to the virus. Common warts are usually harmless and eventually disappear on their own. But many people choose to remove them because they find them bothersome or embarrassing.