An unintended consequence of laser tattoo removal in a 29-year-old man was a diagnosis of malignant melanoma, according to a German case report.
The patient had sought laser treatment for a large, multicolored tattoo but refused initial excision of a nevus located within the pigmented area, reported Christian Raulin, MD, PhD, and colleagues from Laserklinik Karlsruhe in Karlsruhe, Germany.
The laser specialists had been unable to fully evaluate potential melanomatous changes in the nevus clinically because of the presence of black ink pigments, they explained online in JAMA Dermatology.
No significant abnormalities were seen on dermoscopy, however, so they proceeded with treatment. Because of the size of the tattoo — extending across the chest and both arms — numerous sessions were required.
Throughout more than 7 years of treatments, the laser team repeated its recommendation that the nevus be removed, and finally, in late 2009, after 47 sessions, the specialists told the patient that no more treatments would be given without excision.
He finally acquiesced, and biopsy revealed a superficial malignant melanoma.
The patient was unwilling to have a further excision to achieve clear margins, but ultrasound of the lymph nodes
In examining exactly what happens when skin gets sunburned, researchers studying human skin cells and mice found that sunburn is the result of RNA damage.
The red and painful burn is an immune response triggered by this altered genetic material to remove sun-damaged cells, according to the study published in the July 8 online edition of Nature Medicine.
Researchers from the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), suggested their findings could help scientists find a way to block this inflammatory process, which could have implications for a number of medical conditions and treatments, including psoriasis.
“For example, diseases like psoriasis are treated by UV [ultraviolet] light, but a big side effect is that this treatment increases the risk of skin cancer,” lead investigator Dr. Richard Gallo, a professor of medicine at UCSD and Veterans Affairs San Diego Healthcare System, said in a university news release.
“Our discovery suggests a way to get the beneficial effects of UV therapy without actually exposing our patients to the harmful UV light. Also, some people have excess sensitivity to UV light, patients with lupus, for example. We are exploring if we can help them by blocking the pathway we discovered,”
Various conditions can lead to irritated, red skin. Causes can range from a temporary sensitivity to a chronic skin problem. Common culprits of red skin or red spots include:
- Dry skin
- Allergic contact dermatitis
- Eczema (atopic dermatitis)
Red skin may be bumpy or have an itchy, rash-like texture. For some people, particularly those with rosacea, redness may get worse by getting too hot or overly emotional.
Red skin can be hard to hide, but here are some simple home remedies you can try using ingredients you may already have on hand.
Home Remedy: How to Tone Down Red Skin
Fran E. Cook-Bolden, MD, a dermatologist and director of the Skin Specialty Group and the Ethnic Skin Specialty Group in New York City, suggests that you can manage red skin with:
- Chamomile tea bags (brewed)
- Aloe vera
For instance, Dr. Cook-Bolden suggests placing cucumber slices directly on any red spots to cool, soothe, and reduce redness. Want more relief? She recommends making a simple mask by blending a cucumber and a cup of oatmeal.
Another home remedy Cook-Bolden likes for soothing red skin is a clay mask. Mix water or pureed fruit with facial clay to create a thick paste. Apply the mixture to
A fungus can affect any part of the body, but the feet are especially vulnerable. When you wear socks and shoes and your feet sweat, you create a warm, moist environment that’s a perfect breeding ground for a nail fungus, says Oliver Zong, DPM, a podiatrist and director of surgery at NYC Footcare in New York City. If you tend to sweat heavily in general, you may be at greater risk of fungal infections, and if you develop the foot fungus commonly called athlete’s foot, it can also spread to your nails.
Toenail fungus is a condition podiatrists see quite often, says Dr. Zong. Though the signs are yellow nails that have a crumbly appearance, the problem goes deeper. The fungus invades the nail bed (the living skin under the nail) and the cuticle area, Zong explains. As the nail grows out, it becomes food for the fungus.
What can you do about it? First, create an environment that doesn’t allow toenail fungus to grow.
Toenail Fungus Prevention Strategies
The key to keeping toenail fungus away is to keep your feet clean and dry. Here’s how:
- Practice good hygiene. Keeping feet clean by showering or bathing every day is the first step to avoiding toenail
Cold sores are painful blisters that form on the lips or around the mouth.
They’re caused by herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1), one of the herpes viruses.
There’s no cure for cold sores — once you’re infected, the herpes virus stays in your body for life.
But most cold sores go away on their own within about two weeks.
First-time cold sores are often the most painful and last the longest. Future outbreaks of cold sores may be less severe.
There are a number of treatments that may be helpful if you have recurrent cold sores or if you have first-time cold sores that cause a lot of pain.
Medications for Cold Sores
Many people need medication the first time they have cold sores.
There are two classes of medications that can be used to treat cold sores:
Antivirals: These medicines help the body fight the herpes virus. They can help to reduce symptoms and make cold sores go away faster.
You’ll need a prescription from your doctor for most antiviral medications.
Antivirals come as both oral pills and skin creams.
Common antiviral medications used to treat cold sores include:
Abreva (docosanol), which is sold over the counter
Antiviral medications work best when you start taking