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Category: SkinCancer – Malanoma


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Caring for Your Skin, After Sun & Surgery

Taking care of your skin is crucial for effective healing after sun exposure and after surgery success. Summer months mean that skin damage from sun exposure is at its height. As summer comes to a close, it’s time to check your skin because detecting melanoma as early as possible makes it treatable. It is the deadliest cancer, but it doesn’t have to be if it it’s caught early. Regular self checking is a key part of immediate diagnosis is to do a regular self check.

AFTER SUN

What are you looking for? You’re at higher risk for melanoma if you’ve been sunburned frequently, have fair skin or a large amount of moles, live in a tropical or have a family history of melanoma. When you’re self checking, there’s a common acronym to help us remember what to look for. This is called the ABCDEs of warning signs for melanoma. This stands for:

  • Asymmetry: draw an imaginary line through the middle and it should look the same on both sides
  • Border irregularity: ragged or blurred, undefined edges
  • Color changes: a variety of colors within the same spot or mole
  • Diameter: greater than .25 inch (6 millimeters)
  • Evolving: changes over time

Where should you look? Important to look from head to toe, back and front. Using the angles from a hand mirror and a wall mirror to see the harder parts of the body from behind, literally start with the top of your scalp, especially if you haven’t worn hats to protect your head or have fine, thinning hair. Then move downward, examining the face, neck, shoulders, underarms, chest, torso, arms, hands, and nail beds. When checking the lower body, its easier to sit down, but don’t forget to check your buttocks, especially if you wear brazilian or thong bikinis. Look over your legs and feet, even the heels, soles of the feet and toenail beds.

 

AFTER SURGERY

What extra steps should I take? Whether your cosmetic procedure is invasive or non invasive, you should take some special care of your skin to promote healing and longevity of the effects of the procedure. Here are some simple tips to care for your skin after a cosmetic treatment:

  • Follow physicians directions. Each procedure has a unique protocol for optimal healing. This may include salves and the herbal supplement or cream version of Arnica Montana to reduce bruising.
  • Stay hydrated. Drinking plenty of water is good practice in general, but will help flush the area of toxins and empower healing. Avoiding alcohol and other dehydrating beverages so you don’t work against your natural healing processes.
  • Protect yourself from the sun. The skin is more vulnerable after a procedure. UV rays darken scars and this is what you want to prevent, so stay out of the sun.
  • Leave the recovery site alone. This means no picking or poking of the area. Disturbing the area could cause infection or unwanted scarring.
  • Use gentle skin care products. Make the extra effort during this time to pamper your skin while it’s healing. Use only mild, no fragrance skincare.

Help me to help you have beautiful, youthful skin by taking these precautions. From beginning to end, I look forward to helping you in the rejuvenation process. To schedule your consultation, visit www.davinciplastic.com.

Steven Davison M.D.

Board Certified Plastic/Reconstructive Surgeon

Scar Correction for a More Confident and Comfortable You

I have special compassion for my Scar Revision clients, as many of them are suffering with scars that remind them of an accident, burn, surgery or past acne problem. Through specialized study and development of specifically honed skills, employing both surgical and non surgical options, I help my patients get the best possible results. With every Scar Revision, I strive to make the scars less visible for a more pleasing appearance, as well as to restore function to the affected area.

Here’s an overview of the most common Scar Revisions I perform:

  1. Hypertropic scars are raised and often red tinted. They stay within the boundary of the original wound or acne zone. These are commonly the result of acne and can diminish over time.
  2. Keloid scars are slightly more raised than hypertropic scars and can be rubbery, firm and sometimes itchy. They often look inflamed and extend beyond the boundary of the original wound. Certain skin types are more prone to this type of scarring, including people with dark skin tones.
  3. Contracture scars are severe, occurring as the result of a loss of skin over a large area, such as from a burn.  This can affect muscles and tendons to restrict normal movement.

Some other scarring patterns are:

  1. Ice pick scarring is the most common type of acne scar. They are designated by narrow pitted indentations.
  2. Boxcar scars’ defined, angular edges in a box shape look very similar to indentations of chicken pox or vaccination scars. These occur most commonly on the temples or cheeks.
  3. Rolling scars create a shallow, wide indentation that looks like the rippling of waves in the skin.

METHODS FOR MAKING SCARS BETTER… While it’s important to note that scars cannot be removed completely, they can be reduced and made to look noticeably better. If they are raised or depressed, discolored or they cause contour irregularities, don’t worry, there are a variety of options to help improve the skin’s appearance and function.

Based on the type of scarring… during your consultation…we discuss the options and expected results in depth. These are some of the methods we’ve had great success with:

  1. Non Surgical
  • Dermabrasion gently removes the top layers of the skin to smooth out surface irregularities.
  • Dermal Fillers, such as Hyaluronic Acid, fill in sunken scars.
  • Silicone Gel Sheets are clear coverings that help flatten hypertropic scars over time.
  • Steroid Applications and Injections alleviate the itching or pain of keloid scarring. They are applied or injected into the scar to break down the skin’s collagen that has continued to produce even after the wound has healed.
  • Vascular Lesion Treatment addresses the discoloration of scars by shrinking the blood vessels connected to it.
  1. Surgical
  • Skin Grafts are intended for severely scarred areas. It involves taking healthy skin from another part of the body to transplant to the injured area.
  • Tissue Expansion stretches a patch of skin by inserting a saline filled balloon near a scar so that the stretched healthy skin is pulled over to cover the previously scarred area.
  • Z-Plasty and Related Tissue Rearrangement Techniques reorient scars to follow natural lines and creases of the skin. This makes them less noticeable and relieves pulling or pressure of contracture scars.

My compassionate staff and I look forward to the opportunity to help you feel better about how your skin looks and feels. Visit www.davinciplastic.com to schedule a consultation.

Steven Davison M.D.

Board Certified Plastic/Reconstructive Surgeon

 

 

 

 

 

Melanoma/Skin Cancer Detection/Prevention …Early Detection Increases Chances for Survival

One in every five Americans will develop skin cancer during their lifetime and every hour…one person in America dies from skin cancer. Melanoma is the most deadly form of skin cancer and it is preventable/treatable.

National Skin Cancer Awareness is promoted by several organizations such as the National Cancer Institute, Skin Cancer Foundation, Centers for Disease Control and the American Academy of Dermatology. I won’t belabor the facts…just want to remind you of them and offer some helpful and important tips for skin cancer prevention.

Review of Skin Cancer Facts:
– We try to raise the public awareness of the importance of prevention, early detection and immediate treatment of skin cancer. They are: 1) basal cell, 2) squamous cell 3) melanoma.
– More than 3.5 million skin cancers are diagnosed annually in more than 2 million people.
– Melanoma (unlike other cancers) has a wide age distribution…it occurs in young people & seniors.
– Rates of occurrence increase with age- they are highest among 80 years olds.
– One bad burn during childhood doubles the risk for getting melanoma skin cancer later in life.
– Skin cancer is the most deadly for African Americans, Asians & Latinos.

RISK FACTORS
Everyone is at risk…but some people with certain factors are more likely than others to develop skin cancer. The risks include:

Lighter natural color skin
Family history of skin cancer
Personal history of skin cancer
Exposure to the sun through work & play
History of sunburns early in life
Skin that burns easily freckles, reddens easily or becomes painful in the sun
Blue or Green eyes

IMPORTANT TIPS FOR PROTECTION/PREVENTION
1. AVOID the sun between 10am and 2pm…this is the when the rays are at their peak
2. Damage occurs all day long…so be wise and use sunscreen or sunblock
3. Take more precautions when it is hot, humid and windy as these conditions enhance harmful effects of UV rays
4. Cloudy day are dangerous days…we tend to be out more, longer and use less protection. Understand that UV Rays pierce the clouds and cause serious damage (burns)
5. TANS are NOT healthy! No tan, whether from sun exposure or tanning beds, is healthy. The darkened skin is merely a protective measure (performed by your skin). It provides only minimal levels of protection and does not cancel out the need for using other sun protective methods.
6. Short Term Symptoms of over exposure include: blistering, peeling, tanning
7. Long Term Symptoms= increased risk for skin cancer along with dry, wrinkled skin.

Early diagnosis & immediate treatment can mean the difference between
life and death…when dealing with melanoma skin cancer.

Please read and heed this important information.

Ask us to recommend top of the line products to protect your precious skin…and allow you to enjoy your fun in the sun.

Dr. Steven Davison

At DAVinci…
I combine the supreme elements of art & surgical science.

Summer’s Coming, Protect Your Skin

Going into summer, I can’t put enough emphasis on the importance of protecting your skin. It is one of the greatest causes of aging skin and skin cancer, which is the most prevalent form of cancer in the U.S.
How does the sun age skin?
The sun’s ultraviolet (UV) light harms the elastin to cause sagging skin later in life. When the elastin fibers break down over time, the skin loses its ability to go back into place after stretching, and will bruise and tear more readily. Collagen is also negatively affected by UV rays to cause a hollow, dehydrated appearance due to volume loss as we age. Skin discoloration called pigmentation comes to the surface of the skin, and this uneven skin tone also contributes to an aged appearance.

What is skin cancer?
It is the uncontrolled growth of abnormal skin cells that results in tumors. These are either noncancerous (benign) or cancerous (malignant). Of the 3 main types of skin cancer, basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma are less serious types and very successfully treated when detected early. Melanoma, consisting of abnormal skin pigment cells, is the most serious form of skin cancer. Of all the deaths from cancer, 75% of them all are from melanoma.

Protect yourself against aging and skin cancer caused by the sun… As you can see, skin cancer can be serious and yet in many cases it is preventable. Even if you’ve damaged your skin from over exposure, which you can’t completely undo, there still is hope. The skin is regenerative, so to some extent ongoing sun protection can help in the healing process and prevent further damage.

Tips to help prevent skin damage from the sun:
• Wear protective clothing, hats and sunglasses that have UV shield.
• Stay out of the direct sun during peak UV radiation hours between 10 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.
• Protect your children, especially since the majority of sun damage happens before age 18.
• For UVB protection, use sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or more. Sunscreen with zinc oxide provides UVA protection, but should be applied 20 minutes before sun exposure. Be sure to reapply every 2 hours or more often if you are sweating or swimming.

Sunscreen Scam… A recent study done by Consumer Reports shows that many of today’s sunscreens falsely advertise levels of SPF. In some cases, certain brands had up to 70 percent less protection than advertised on the package. The test included 34 brands, 11 of which fell short of their protection claims, some of them being:

• Coppertone ClearlySheer for Beach & Pool SPF 50+ (delivered SPF 37)
• Hawaiian Tropic Sheer Touch Ultra Radiance SPF 50 (delivered SPF 28)
• Babyganics Mineral-Based SPF 50+ (delivered SPF 25)
• Banana Boat Sport Performance Clear UltraMist with Powerstay Technology SPF 50+ (delivered SPF 24)
• Yes To Cucumbers Natural SPF 30 (delivered SPF 14)

The brands that received good protection ratings were:
• Coppertone Water Babies SPF 50 lotion
• Equate (Walmart) Ultra Protection SPF 50 lotion
• Banana Boat SunComfort Continuous Spray SPF 50+
• La Roche-Posay Anthelios 60 Melt-in Sunscreen Milk SPF 60 (got a perfect score of 100 in the test)

Please perform skin self-exams regularly to be familiar with existing growths so that you notice changes. Also, if you are unhappy with the effects of elastin and collagen damage already caused by the sun and aging, I offer a variety of effective surgical and non surgical options to help rejuvenate your skin. Visit www.davinciplastic.com for more details.

Enjoy your summer!

Steven Davison M.D.
Board Certified Plastic/Reconstructive Surgeon

Lipomas Removal…Quick Squeeze Method

Lipomas are the most common form of soft tissue tumors and they are formed with adipose (fatty) tissue. Lipomas can form in many shapes, sizes and places on the body and they occur more often during middle age (40 to 60) but they are often diagnosed in children as congenital lipomas. They are soft to the touch, moveable and usually painless. Typically they grow just between the skin and underlying muscle but can also be found in the deeper muscle tissues such as the intermuscular septa, or in organs like the abdominal organs, the oral cavity, the internal auditory canal, the cerebellopontine angle and the thorax. They require treatment by a plastic surgeon for safe, effective removal. Lipomatosis, also called liposis, adiposis or lipomatoza and simply refers to groups of lipomas in one location on the body.

Other names for lipomas (types) include:

  1. Adenolipomas are associated with the sweat glands
  2. Conventional lipomas are the most common type composed of mature white fat
  3. Hibemomas are made up from brown fat
  4. Fibrolipomas are fat and fibrous tissue
  5. Angiolipomas are mostly blood vessels and fat tissues
  6. Myelolipomas are fat and the tissues that make blood vessels
  7. Spindle Cell lipomas are rod shaped, seen mostly in elderly men
  8. Intradermal spindle cell lipomas is most common in women
  9. Pleomorphic lipomas are the various shapes and sizes
  10. Atypical lipomas are composed of a large number of “deeper” fat cells
  11. Neural lipomas are fibrous, fatty tissues
  12. Others include: Proteus Syndrome, Cowden Syndrome caused by PTEN gene mutations, Familial lipodystrophy, Hibernomas and Familial angiolipomatosis.

METHODS OF REMOVAL

Lipoma cases are nearly always referred to a surgeon who is skilled and qualified in their removal.

Typical Treatments:1) endoscope assisted removal: 2) suction assisted removal, 3) minimal incision removal and 4) remote incision lipoma extraction.  These all work and have been used by surgeons for decades to remove lipomas of all types.  But, some of these techniques are tedious and require extra equipment (even though they are advanced treatments) and are not always necessary since a quicker, simpler method is now in use.

I helped pioneer a very simple, safe and effective method that involves a “simple incision and a quick squeeze” to remove lipomas without all the extra instruments used in other methods.

Once surgeons learn the quick squeeze method and start using it, they realize it’s great benefits. It’s safe, quick, simple and effective.

QUICK SQUEEZE LIPOMA REMOVAL

1) The lipoma is identified by palpation and its margins are outlined.  2) The area is then infiltrated with local anesthesia and is prepared and draped in standard fashion.  3) An incision approximately one quarter to one third the diameter of the lipoma is made (carried down to the lipoma capsule).  4) The lipoma is then squeezed out through the incision…without any additional dissection.

 

LIPOMA STUDY

Involved 140 lipomas removed, in 50 patients, over the life of this study.These lipomas were located on the face, scalp, neck, thorax, back and flanks, hips/pelvis and on both the upper and lower body extremities.  Of the 140 removals, there were only two recurrences, no complications, no revisions.

Simple Incision, Quick Squeeze technique for lipoma removal makes them gone in 30 seconds!

See complete information about this method of lipoma removal at: www.DAVinciplasticsurgery.com.

Dr. Davison

 

 

 

MELANOMA SKIN CANCER Information from Dr. Steven Davison

SCREENING & PROTECTION INFORMATION  from Dr. Steven Davison

Here are a few more tips on Melanoma…since May is National Skin Cancer awareness month.  See my last blog for detailed information on the three types of skin cancer and most critically… melanoma skin cancer.

SCREENING:  Melanoma can be deadly but is treatable with immediate diagnosis and early treatment.  After Melanoma spreads to the lymph nodes, the 5 year survival rate possible with treatment, drops to 62% and 15% respectively.

You can self-screen to check for skin cancers or you can see a dermatologist or sign up for a “free” cancer screening.  They are offered frequently around the country.

SELF CHECK for MELANOMA:

Use these steps:

1) STAND UP & look into the mirror & examine your head, scalp, face, neck, chest, torso, (women under the breasts), hands, nails, elbows, arms and underarms.

2) SIT DOWN & check your legs, feet, soles, heels & toenails.  Use a HAND MIRROR to check genitals.

3) STAND UP & use a HAND MIRROR to inspect the back of neck, shoulders, upper arms, back, buttocks & legs.

REDUCE YOUR RISK:  We cannot completely avoid sun exposure, but there are ways to reduce the risk from exposure.

COVER UP…Wear cool, clothing that covers your body.  Dark colors block more UV rays than light colors.

WEAR A HAT…Wear a wide brim hat when out in the sun. It should cover your ears, eyes, forehead, nose and scalp.  A baseball cap is better than nothing.

SUNGLASSES… invest in good glasses that block UV rays.  They should block 99 t0 100% of UVA & UVB rays.

SUNSCREEN…LOTS OF IT!  Get it, use it liberally and apply it often…at least every 2 hours when in the sun.

***Ask Nora about our sunscreen products.

If you have any questions or concerns, call me and we’ll address them right away.

Dr. Steven Davison

At DAVinci…I combine the supreme elements of art & surgical science.

May is National Skin Cancer Awareness Month…Helpful Info from Dr. Steven Davison

May is National Melanoma/Skin Cancer Detection/Prevention Month…Early Detection Increases Chances for Survival

One in every five Americans will develop skin cancer during their lifetime and every hour…one person in America dies from skin cancer.  Melanoma is the most deadly form of skin cancer and it is preventable/treatable.

May has been designated as National Skin Cancer Awareness month by several organizations such as the National Cancer Institute, Skin Cancer Foundation, Centers for Disease Control and the American Academy of Dermatology.  I won’t belabor the facts…just want to remind you of them and offer some helpful and important tips for skin cancer prevention.

Review of Skin Cancer Facts

-During the month of May we try to raise the public awareness of the importance of prevention, early detection and immediate treatment of skin cancer.

They are:  1) basal cell, 2) squamous cell 3) melanoma.

-More than 3.5 million skin cancers are diagnosed annually in more than 2 million people.

-Melanoma (unlike other cancers) has a wide age distribution…it occurs in young people & seniors.

-Rates of occurrence increase with age- they are highest among 80 years olds.

-One bad burn during childhood doubles the risk for getting melanoma skin cancer later in life.

-Skin cancer is the most deadly for African Americans, Asians & Latinos.

RISK FACTORS

Everyone is at risk…but some people with certain factors are more likely than others to develop skin cancer.  The risks include:

Lighter natural color skin

Family history of skin cancer

Personal history of skin cancer

Exposure to the sun through work & play

History of sunburns early in life

Skin that burns easily freckles, reddens easily or becomes painful in the sun

Blue or Green eyes

IMPORTANT TIPS FOR PROTECTION/PREVENTION

1.  AVOID the sun between 10am and 2pm…this is the when the rays are at their peak

2.  Damage occurs all day long…so be wise and use sunscreen or sunblock

3.  Take more precautions when it is hot, humid and windy as these conditions enhance harmful effects of   UV rays

4.  Cloudy days are dangerous days…we tend to be out more, longer and use less protection.  Understand that UV Rays pierce the clouds and cause serious damage (burns)

5.  TANS are NOT healthy!  No tan, whether from sun exposure or tanning beds, is healthy.  The darkened skin is merely a protective measure (performed by your skin).  It provides only minimal levels of protection and does not cancel out the need for using other sun protective methods.

6.  Short Term Symptoms of over exposure include: blistering, peeling, tanning

7.  Long Term Symptoms= increased risk for skin cancer along with dry, wrinkled skin.

Early diagnosis & immediate treatment of melanoma cancer can mean the difference between life and death.

Please read and heed this important information.

Ask us to recommend top of the line products to protect your precious skin…and allow you to enjoy your fun in the sun.

Dr. Steven Davison

At DAVinci…I combine the supreme elements of art & surgical science.

Schedule Your Consultation With Dr. Davison

The initial consultation with your surgeon is critical! It should always be face to face with your surgeon during which time he/she listens closely to your concerns. Dr. Davison believes this time spent with you is critical to both you and to him. It is during the consultation that he comes to fully understand your concerns, evaluates them correctly and is then able to make the recommendations and develop the treatment plan thats right for you. Dr. Davison invests the time to sit down and talk to you face-to-face.

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3301 New Mexico Ave. Suite 236

Washington D.C.