A rash is a common condition that results in red, inflamed, or discolored patches of skin. Rashes may be raised or flat, may cause itching/burning sensations, or may be localized or widespread. Given that most of us will deal with a rash at some point during our lifetimes, it’s important to know when you can treat a rash yourself and when you should turn to your dermatologists in Gillette, Laramie, and Casper, WY, Dr. Scott Bennion and Dr. Matthew Green.
There are many different kinds of rashes and causes of rashes, so let’s simplify it a bit by categorizing rashes into two types: infectious and noninfectious.
Common causes of non-infectious rashes include,
- Contact dermatitis
- Allergic dermatitis
- Drug reaction
- Dry skin
- Pregnancy-related rashes
- Detergents or certain irritants
- Food allergies
Common causes of infectious rashes include,
- Athlete’s foot
- Lyme disease
- Bacterial infections
- Viral infections
How can I tell what is causing my rash?
Since there are so many reasons why someone may develop a rash, it’s often difficult to figure out the cause on your own. Fortunately, your skin doctors in Gillette, Laramie, and Casper, WY, are able to diagnose the cause of your rash by looking at the symptoms, duration, and appearance of the rash, as well as with a look at your medical history.
What are the symptoms of a rash?
A rash can take on many different forms. For instance, the rash may be flat or raised, there may be plaques, blisters, or pus-filled bumps. The rash may also cause itching, burning, redness, and pain.
When should I see a doctor about my rash?
Most rashes will go away on their own; however, it’s important to call your doctor if the rash,
- Gets worse
- Is painful
- Last more than a couple of days
- Continues to spread
- Doesn’t respond to at-home care (e.g. antihistamines)
- Turns into open sores
- Affects your daily routine and activities
- Becomes infected (e.g. pus; severe swelling)
- Is accompanied by a fever
If you have trouble breathing, if your throat feels tight, or if your tongue swells, you could be dealing with a serious allergic reaction. Call 911 or head to your nearest emergency room immediately.
Concerned? Give us a call
If you are dealing with a rash and you don’t know what is causing it, then it’s a good time to turn to the skin experts here at Central Wyoming Skin Clinic in Gillette, Laramie, and Casper, WY, to find out what’s going on and how to properly treat the issue. Call us today at (307) 234-0003.
Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer affecting adults in the U.S. In fact, one out of every five adults will develop a form of skin cancer at some point during their lives. Seeing a dermatologist or skin doctor regularly for skin cancer screenings helps with early detection, which can give you an improved prognosis if skin cancer ever develops. At Central Wyoming Skin Clinic, Dr. Scott Bennion and Dr. Matthew Green are your Casper, WY, skin doctors for the diagnosis and treatment of skin cancer.
Skin Cancer Types and Causes
Two common types of skin cancer affecting adults in the U.S. are basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma. The least common type of skin cancer is melanoma, but it is responsible for more deaths than any other type of skin cancer. Early detection of melanoma and other types of skin cancer can increase the effectiveness of treatment and dramatically improve a patient’s long-term prognosis. Common causes of melanoma and many other types of skin cancer include extensive sun exposure, severe sunburns, and using tanning beds.
Signs of Skin Cancer
Unusual changes to the skin can be signs of possible skin cancer. See your Casper, WY, skin doctor or dermatologist right away if you notice any unusual changes to your skin. Additionally, scheduling skin cancer screenings regularly allow the doctor to monitor your skin for any changes. Some signs of skin cancer include:
- Speckled brown spots on the skin
- Patches of red or pink scaly lesions
- Changes in the appearance of existing moles
- Sudden bleeding or itching of existing moles
- Waxy and translucent come-shaped growths
- Black or brown streaks under the fingernails or toenails
- Unexplained sores that repeatedly re-open after healing
Skin Cancer Treatments
Many effective options are available for treating different types of skin cancer. A Casper, WY, skin doctor can recommend an appropriate treatment option for each patient’s specific type and stage of skin cancer. Treatments for skin cancer include:
- Surgical excision — Surgical removal of the tumor from the skin.
- Cryosurgery — Liquid nitrogen is used to freeze off the tumor.
- Radiation therapy — Radiation is targeted at the affected area to kill cancer skills.
- Curettage and desiccation — Scraping out the tumor and applying an electric current to kill any remaining cancer cells.
- Mohs micrographic surgery — Mapping of the affected skin tissue to minimize the removal of healthy skin tissue.
- Prescription medicated creams — Applied topically to the skin to help stimulate the body’s immune system to target the cancer cells.
See a skin doctor if you have developed any unusual changes in your skin. If skin cancer is present, the doctor can develop an individualized treatment plan for you. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Bennion or Dr. Green, your Casper, WY, skin doctors, contact Central Wyoming Skin Clinic at (307) 234-0003.
There are a number of skin conditions and outbreaks that require medical intervention and treatment by a dermatologist. Symptoms like rashes, acne, skin discolorations and spots can either result from a primary skin problem like clogged pores or rosacea, or due to an underlying medical problem like an allergic reaction or other health condition. Dr. Scott Bennion and Dr. Matthew Green, the skin doctors at Central Wyoming Skin Clinic, offer dermatology and skincare services in Casper, WY.
Dermatology Services in in Casper, WY
Some of the most common skin diseases and conditions include:
- Hives and allergic reactions
- Contact dermatitis
- Actinic keratosis
- Skin cancer
- Keratosis pilaris
Signs and Symptoms that You Should Discuss with a Skin Doctor
Common skin problems like acne and eczema range in severity from mild to severe. The occasional acne outbreak or eczema flare up may not necessarily require treatment, or the symptoms can be treated conservatively and tend to clear up on their own depending on your situation. But chronic or severe skin problems can cause scarring and other symptoms, so you should see a dermatologist if you notice any changes to your skin, especially with moles, which can be a sign of skin cancer.
Some of the most common signs and symptoms that you need to see a skin doctor include:
- Chronic/severe acne
- Hair loss
- Cold sores
- Skin growths or changes to existing moles
- Skin lesions
- Spots and discolorations
- Signs of premature aging
- Nail abnormalities
- Excessive sweating
- Thinning eyelashes
- Sores or cuts that don't heal
- Signs of infection
Find a Skin Doctor
For more information about our dermatology and skin clinic services, contact Central Wyoming Skin Clinic today to schedule an appointment with Dr. Bennion or Dr. Green by calling (307) 234-0003. We have offices serving the Casper, Laramie, and Gillette, WY, areas.
What is Mohs surgery?
Mohs surgery is a specialized, highly effective technique for removing skin cancers. It was developed in the 1930s by Dr. Frederic Mohs at the University of Wisconsin and is now practiced throughout the world. Mohs surgery differs from other skin cancer treatments in that it permits the immediate and complete microscopic examination of the removed cancer tissue so that all roots and extensions of the cancer can be eliminated. Mohs surgery has the highest reported cure rate of all treatments for skin cancer.
While Mohs surgery is an effective option, treating all skin cancers with Mohs surgery is not necessary. Mohs surgery is reserved for skin cancers that grow back after previous treatment, cancers that are at high risk of reoccurring, or cancers that are located in cosmetic areas where preservation of the maximum amount of normal skin is important.
How is Mohs surgery done?
1. The skin is numbed using local anesthetic. The visible cancer is removed with a thin layer of additional tissue. This takes only a few minutes.
2. The specimen is color coded to distinguish top from bottom and left from right. A technician freezes the tissue and removes very thin slices from the entire edge and undersurface. These slices are placed on microscope slides and stained for examination under a microscope. This is the most time consuming part of the procedure, often requiring an hour or more to complete.
3. Dr. Bennion then carefully examines these slides under the microscope. This allows examination of the entire surgical margin of the removed tissue. That is, the entire undersurface and the complete edge of the specimen is examined. All microscopic roots of the cancer can thus be precisely identified and pinpointed.
Why remove skin cancer with Mohs surgery?
Some skin cancers are deceptively large-far bigger under the skin than they appear to be from the surface. These cancers may have "roots" in the skin or along blood vessels, nerves, or cartilage. Also, skin cancers that recur after previous treatments may send out extensions deep under the scar tissue that has formed. Mohs surgery is specifically designed to remove these cancers by tracking and removing these cancerous "roots."
Recently there has been a surge of anti-screen rants on the internet. Multiple websites suggest that sunscreens can cause cancer, affect your hormonal balance and even kill coral reefs. Here are some facts:
Broad spectrum sunscreens prevent premature skin aging and cancer caused by the ultraviolet rays (UVR) of the sun. There are literally hundreds of scientific studies demonstrating the protective effects of sunscreens.
There are many studies suggesting that UV sunscreens are very safe but the ultimate test of safety for any product is the widespread use without ill effects in the general population. When drugs and medical products safety studies are evaluated by the FDA, there typically are thousands of study test subjects. Even though the drugs are determined “safe” by the FDA, the ultimate test of the drug occurs when it is released to the public and tens of thousands of patients start using it. Only then can doctors determine the real safety of a drug. The safety of sunscreens is a case in point. Sun screens have been used by millions of individuals over decades without evidence of their use causing any serious problems such as cancer or other diseases.
Recently Hawaii has banned oxybenzone, a very effective sun screen component, because of lab studies demonstrating it is toxic to coral and may cause “coral bleaching." Recent studies of the actual concentrations of this sunscreen in beaches where it is used demonstrate very low concentrations incapable of causing coral damage.
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